Dual role in ODIs keeping KL Rahul `on his toes`


KL Rahul is having a tough time juggling his dual role of wicketkeeper-batsman in ODIs but he is not complaining as his priority is to be in the playing XI.

The 30-year-old, who is a regular India Test opener, is now not only donning the wicket-keeping gloves in the absence of injured Rishabh Pant, but has also been pushed down the order to No.5, with Shubman Gill occupying the opening slot. Huh.

Rahul said the team is clear about what role it wants from him.

“Obviously, I’ve done it for a few years now. From late 2019, during 2020 and a few games in 2021. It’s nothing new,” he told the media after guiding India. on a series sealing win Sri Lanka Here in the second ODI.

“The team has given me time to settle into this position and role. When you have the support of your captain and coach, it helps you focus and bring your 100 per cent concentration, which the team would expect. Has been.”

“Yes, it is different from what I do in other formats which keeps me on my toes, challenges me – a different role helps me understand my game better.”

For the extra responsibility, Rahul has to work harder on his fitness.

“When it comes to batting in the middle order I have to approach things a bit differently. Wicketkeeping and batting can be a bit more taxing on the body, as I haven’t done it for very long, I have worked it in and out Have done.” White ball cricket.

“It is the tough part. But since I know it is required of me, I try to manage my body and work more on my fitness. A little work on my keeping and a lot of work on my batting. ” Batting against the middle order and spin.”

“Any role that helps win matches for my team and country satisfies me the most, wherever I bat. Firstly, I want to be in the playing XI, that is the most important thing. “

Also read: India vs Sri Lanka: KL Rahul’s unbeaten half-century leads India to series win

Rahul said that he has got used to playing different roles for the team.

“Once you’re out there, I try and do whatever the team needs me to do. It’s something I’ve always done. Ever since I played for India Started playing cricket,” he said, recalling his Test debut. In the Boxing Day Test against Australia in 2014.

“Then later I went to open, played at No.6 and when Shikhar (Dhawan) got injured, I opened again, played at No.4 and 5.”

Rahul, who also led India in Rohit’s absence last year, said the faith reposed in him by the team management helps him thrive under pressure.

“Everything I’ve done, I’ve been asked to keep wicket. It’s been fun for me. I’ve really enjoyed taking on different challenges. I really enjoy performing in tough situations and under pressure.” Ready to stay.” ,

“It only tells me that the team really trusts me and supports me under the leadership of Virat and Rohit. I really enjoyed doing that. It made me better understand myself, my game and my batting.” Helped me understand how I handle pressure when taken out of my comfort zone.”

Rahul occupies the wicket-keeper’s spot at the expense of Ishan Kishan, who was dropped despite scoring the fastest double century in the previous ODI series.

It has also sparked debate over the selection of Rahul who has been battling poor form since returning from injury during IPL 2022.

Rahul bails out while chasing 216 India Out of being 86/4 with his knock of sheer grit and tenacity.

He was the only designated batsman left in the middle as he stitched two crucial partnerships with Hardik Pandya (36) and Akshar Patel (21) to take them to victory in 43.2 overs.

“Something is happening with the ball as well, we have handled the pressure well. Games like this are also important. We played a 370 plus and they scored 300 plus,” he added.

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