Thursday, June 24, 2021

K L Rahul to play the second Test: Kohli confirms

After being dropped for the first Test match against Sri Lanka due to fever, K L Rahul is all set to play the second Test match. Skipper Virat Kohli has confirmed in a press meet about Rahul’s comeback. 



K L Rahul has been India’s top most established opener in Test formats. He was doing well at the nets, but the Bengaluru boy fell ill just few days before the inaugural Test match. He has recovered now and is as good as new. In a recent press meet, skipper Kohli confirmed Rahul’s position in the team saying

We have a team meeting later on after practice and we’ll be able to clarify that then. But yes, according to me, KL (Rahul) will definitely come back into the eleven


Batting statistics in Test matches:

K L Rahul played his debut match against Australia in Border-Gavaskar Trophy. Though he didn’t start off with flying colors, he did make an impact in the succeeding years. The stats below talks much about his progress in recent years.


Year Matches Innings Runs Average 50 100 Highest
2015 5 10 256 25.60 0 2 110
2016 7 9 539 59.88 1 2 199
2017 5 9 405 50.62 6 0 90


His consistent performance over two years has earned him a solid spot in the Indian Test team. Despite being hospitalized for a couple of days due to fever, he has hit the nets soon enough. 


The dilemma over the second opener:

Rahul’s confirmation in the playing XI has left the Virat Kohli in a dilemma over the spot for the second opener. Both Shikhar Dhawan and Abhinav Mukund have shown brilliant performances in the previous Test match. The duo registered their respective highest score in the last match. In the recent press meet, Virat Kohli said

Obviously, KL [Rahul] has been our established opener. I feel one of the openers will have to make way for KL because, what he’s done in the past two years for us has been very solid, and he deserves to come back and start fresh in Test cricket again.


These assuring words from skipper is a clear cut indication that one of the openers will have to step down to make way for Lokesh Rahul. Upon being asked for the spot second in the team for opener, Kohli replied

I feel in a situation like this, you need to sit down and think which player has had more impact on the game, who has been able to sort of make that difference in the game straight away.


This statement from Kohli hints the probable exit of Abhinav Mukund. In terms of experience and impact creating ability, Shikhar Dhawan has a better chance of retaining back in the squad. 

Author’s Take:

K L Rahul is a promising player and the skipper’s decision to include him in playing XI. He is definitely an asset to the team and his previous records narrate the same. Now, the question of the hour is, who will be the other opener? Mukund’s awareness on the field and sharp catching skills have managed to impress the captain but in terms of batting, Dhawan has a better edge. The suspense over this issue will be revealed tomorrow when India takes on Sri Lanka in the second Test of the series. 


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