Gautam Gambhir says that he is surprised to see the two extremes of Indian opener KL Rahul, who is woefully out of form. Rahul opened in all the three T20Is as the team backed him to the hilt, but he returned with scores of 1, 0, and 0 in the ongoing T20I series against England has led to calls to drop him after such returns.
Though Virat Kohli and the Indian team management have said that KL Rahul will be continued to be backed, his minimal returns with the bat is making it difficult to justify his continued selection in the playing XI, all the while India had tried Shikhar Dhawan, Ishan Kishan, and Rohit Sharma as his partners, with Kishan making a half-century on his T20I debut.
When KL Rahul Is On A Roll, He Can Give You Back-To-Back Hundreds Irrespective Of The Format, But When He Is Not, There Is Nothing At All: Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir said that even when the likes of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma are out of form, they are still contributing to the team with some scores, but with KL Rahul, it’s totally different.
He said that he is surprised at how woefully out of form Rahul tends to get when things aren’t going his way and feels even when the batsman is out of form, there has to be some kind of contribution rather than conjuring nothing but single-digit scores.
“It surprises me, when I look at KL Rahul. They are two completely different extremes. When he’s on a roll, he can give you back-to-back hundreds irrespective of T20 format or the 50-over format. But when he just completely looks out of it, there is nothing in the middle,” Gambhir said in a video on ESPNCricinfo.
“Even if Virat and Rohit are out of form, they will keep contributing. But when you see KL Rahul, either it’s everything or nothing. That is not what international cricket is all about because You will not always get big scores, you will not always have those big hundreds or a 70 or an 80 in T20 but there needs to be some contribution,” he added.
KL Rahul was part of India’s Test team in the recent England series, but didn’t get to play a single match.
This Has Been A Template In Rahul’s Career: Gautam Gambhir
Gambhir further talked about a pattern to his batting right from his debut Test, saying that when he is on a roll, Rahul belts runs effortlessly, but once he gets into a foul patch of form, runs just dry off. To be noted, KL Rahul is coming off a terrific IPL 2020, where he pummeled 670 runs at an average of over 55, with one century and five fifties, but since then, has been struggling for runs.
“I’m not talking about this series. That has been the template. Even when he got dropped from the Test side, that was exactly the template. Suddenly he will get a hundred and then suddenly there will be nothing after that. Even in the 50-over cricket, when he opened the batting, there was either a hundred or nothing,” Gambhir explained.
“Then he was pushed into performing the dual role of being a wicketkeeper and a middle-order batsman where there’s much less pressure. But in the T20 format, he looks completely out of form. I don’t like talking too much about form because T20 cricket can be very difficult for a batsman. Looking at these three deliveries, he has been beaten. Not that he played a bad shot,” Gambhir signed off.