KL Rahul lost his first match as India ODI skipper in Paarl to start the series on a losing note. He also lost his first Test as skipper when he led the team in the absence of Virat Kohli in Johannesburg. Rahul replaced Rohit Sharma as the ODI skipper for the series after the former was ruled out with a hamstring injury.
Former Pakistan skipper Salman Butt kept his opinion on KL Rahul as India’s ODI skipper after he lost the first game. Reviewing the first ODI on his Youtube channel, Butt said the energy from this Indian team under KL Rahul seemed to be dipping. There were no celebrations after India took a wicket, also Rahul did not seem to set any attacking field throughout South Africa’s innings.
The Energy That Virat Kohli Brought Was Missing: Salman Butt
“The energy that Virat brought to the ground as captain was missing. Maybe the team doesn’t have that vibe with KL. The grip and energy of a team that is attached with its captain as well as that unity was missing. KL didn’t have energy,” Butt said in a video on his YouTube channel.
“It happens with some people. They have a different vibe when given responsibility and another when they do not have it. He didn’t seem like an out-of-the-box thinker. As a captain, you keep on trying and keep the opposition guessing. These things were not evident in his leadership,” he explained.
Butt also had advice for the Indian team heading into the second ODI in Paarl on January 21. He asked the Indian team to go in with an extra batsman by making KL Rahul keep and including either Ishan Kishan or Rutuaj Gaikwad in the line-up. He also asked the Indian team management to replace Bhuvneshwar Kumar with an out-an-out pace bowler.
India lost the first ODI by 31 runs. South Africa scored 296/4 batting first with centuries from Temba Bavuma and Rassie van der Dussen. India scored 265/8 as the fifties from Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Shardul Thakur were not enough to help India get to a win. India needs to win the second ODI to keep the series alive.