Legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara named the cricketer he would want in his Test, ODI and T20I teams. Lara said he is really impressed by KL Rahul and love the way he bats.
Rahul recently became the first Indian player to score 500-plus runs in three successive seasons of IPL. The KXIP captain is currently the leading run-scorer of IPL 2020 by some distance. Rahul has scored 525 runs in 9 matches at an average of 75.00 scored at a strike rate of 135.65. He has scored five fifties so far and also has the highest score of this season to his name – an unbeaten 132 against Royal Challengers Bangalore.
“He’s my test batsman, he’s my 50-over batsman and he’s my T20 batsman,” Lara said on Star Sports after KXIP beat Mumbai Indians in a thrilling contest which had to be decided via a second Super Over after both teams ended on level terms not once but twice.
“As a captain he has done very well. I love the way he bats, love the way he puts them together. Yes he struggled to finish off matches towards the beginning but now he’s looking to improve that too,” Lara said.
Rahul smashed a scintillating 51-ball 77 to take KXIP on the brink of a successful chase but team-mates Deepak Hooda and Jordan could only level the scores at 176 for six in the stipulated 20 overs.
Rahul blasted seven fours and three sixes in his knock to cross 500 runs this season and almost single-handedly take KXIP home.
He, along with Gayle (24), took KXIP to 75 for one in nine overs after losing Mayank Agarwal (11) early in the innings.
However, Gayle was sent packing by Rahul Chahar in the 10th over and then Bumrah returned to dismiss Nicholas Pooran (24 off 11) to leave Punjab at 108 for 3.
Rahul then pulled Chahar for a six to bring up yet another fifty but the leg-spinner made a good comeback one ball later, removing Glenn Maxwell at the other end as KXIP slipped to 115 for four in 14th over.
He added another 38 with Deepak Hooda (23 not out) but he was done in by a yorker from Bumrah in the 18th over.
This is not the first time Lara has heaped praise on KL Rahul. The former West Indies batsman had earlier termed Rahul as his favourite batsman and hailed his technique.
(With PTI inputs)