KL Rahul
KL Rahul. (Photo: BCCI)

Punjab Kings (PBKS) skipper KL Rahul said he felt so good with his timing that he “could hit every ball” over the boundary as the opener put on a spectacular display of batting against the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in Dubai on Thursday.

KL Rahul thumped 98 unbeaten runs off just 42 balls in an innings laced with 7 sparkling fours and 8 cracking sixes, helping Punjab chase down 135 in 13 overs and keeping them mathematically alive in the playoff race.

The PBKS skipper said that they had been given instruction to chase down the total in quick time to keep their hoped lighting up. He had got the licence to play his shots and look to the boundary line.

KL Rahul
KL Rahul (Image: IPL/Twitter)

“It was really hot today. The plan was simple. The numbers guys told us a few permutations and combinations and told us what gives us the best chance. We wanted to score it before 14 overs, so I had the licence from ball one,” KL Rahul said at the post-match presentation.

“Just one of those days when it comes off. Had complete clarity of what I wanted to do and that was pleasing. All the shots hit the middle of the bat. I don’t think I’ve creamed the ball this well in some time. That felt nice. Favourite shot was the one I played to Hazlewood. I love the pull and the one over square leg was my favourite,” he added.

There’s been a lot of talk about the strike rates and stuff: KL Rahul

KL Rahul revealed that he had been in the knowledge of the criticism he has received over the past few seasons for stifling his instincts and playing with a lower strike rate. He stated that he would continue to play in the manner that suits his team.

“There’s been a lot of talk about the strike rates and stuff. Myself and the team know how we want to play. I’ll always put the teams need first. I feel like I may end up letting the team down if I play how I want to play,” he added.

Today was different though, and the fans got to see KL Rahul in full flow. He asserted that he’s not a ball basher but relies more on timing.

“But today, this was how I needed to play. When you get going, you feel like you can hit the ball all over the park. The only thing I tell myself is that I’m not a power player and look to time the ball in the right areas. Today was one of those days where I felt I could hit every ball. Love that feeling, I’m very happy,” the PBKS skipper concluded.

Punjab move up to the fifth spot with 12 points. Mathematically they can qualify for the playoffs if KKR, who are also on 12 points, lose by a big margin to RR and MI, also on 12 points, lose to SRH on Friday.

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