Former India spinner Maninder Singh reckons KL Rahul must have learned his lesson at Headingley after being amongst runs at Trent Bridge and Lord’s. The opener registered scores of 0 and 8 in the third Test following a fifty and a century in the first couple of Tests, upon making his return to the Test side after two years.
In fact, the dismissal form of KL Rahul in the first innings – edging a widish delivery from James Anderson while going for an expansive drive in the first over – was disappointing. Maninder feels that the opener attempted that shot because he got complacent due to his good form previously in the series.
“It can happen to anybody after you had a couple of great Test matches. The way he got out in the first innings started to create doubts in his mind that ‘am I good enough to bat on these kind of surfaces where the ball is seaming around and swinging.’ As far as KL Rahul is concerned, it is a lesson for him that when he is in form, he has to carry it on and not get complacent like he did from the first innings because you start doubting your technique,” Maninder Singh said while speaking with ESPNcricinfo.
KL Rahul looked as he was having more trouble than Rohit: Steve Harmison
Former England pacer Steve Harmison observed KL Rahul in the second innings was much more unsettled than his batting partner, Rohit Sharma, who has been terrific in his shot selection – whether to defend, leave or attack – throughout the series.
Rahul was scratchy in his 54-ball stay for 8 runs. He was troubled by both Anderson and Ollie Robinson, before getting out to change bowler Craig Overton, when Jonny Bairstow took a stunning one-handed catch at second slip.
“KL Rahul looked as though he was having more trouble out of the two openers. He looked as though he didn’t know how he was going to score. He got into a rut,” Harmison said.
India, meanwhile, have a mountain to climb. They went into lunch on Day 4 with 320 runs in arrears and have 9 wickets in hand to survive.