KL Rahul will be leading the Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) this season and he has reportedly urged the team management to let him bat down the order. Former India all-rounder Irfan Pathan suggests that Rahul batting down the order will help Lucknow Super Giants as well as his cause. Rahul was opening the batting for LSG in the past two seasons and even with brilliant personal stats, he was not able to contribute to the team’s cause. KL Rahul started playing in the middle-order for India last year and has been brilliant since then.
KL Rahul missed most of the second half of the IPL 2023 after he was ruled out of the tournament due to a thigh injury during a match against RCB. He returned to cricket after a good four months during the Asia Cup and Immediately made an impact for the Indian team in the middle order. He can be a valuable asset for Lucknow Super Giants playing at No.4 or No.5.
Irfan Pathan was asked during a chat on Star Sports whether it would work for the Lucknow-based franchise if Rahul bats in the middle order. He responded, “He is a car with gears in an era of automatic cars. He can bat in any gear from first to fifth. He even has a sixth gear. So considering that KL Rahul batting down the order might not be bad at all.”
He feels Quinton de Kock and Kyle Mayers could open for the Lucknow Super Giants if KL Rahul decides to bat in the middle order. “It could be good for the team and him as well. The team combination could include both Quinton de Kock and Kyle Mayers in such a scenario. If both of them get a place, they can go with an all-Indian pace attack,” added Irfan Pathan.
KL Rahul Has Never Batted Below No.3 In T20s
Batting at No.4 or 5 will be a challenge for the Indian wicketkeeper-batter as he has never batted below No.3 in the shortest format. It will be a new challenge for KL Rahul to bat at No.4 and if he performs well in the IPL 2024 while batting down the order then India will have another aggressor in the middle order in the T20 World Cup. Meanwhile, LSG traded Devdutt Paddikal from Rajasthan Royals ahead of the auctions and it is a possibility that Paddikal can be the new opener or play at No.3 for LSG.
The Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 is expected to commence during the third week of March and will last till the end of May. Lucknow Super Giants have qualified for the playoffs in two consecutive seasons but have failed to go past the eliminator. They were eliminated by RCB in 2022 and then by MI in 2023. However, the KL Rahul-led LSG will be confident this season with a powerful lineup. The IPL will be closely followed by the ICC T20 World Cup 2024 which is scheduled to commence on June 1.