KL Rahul takes giant leap from Twenty20 to Test cricket

Updated: Dec 20, 2016, 12:30 IST | G Unnikrishnan |

The first thing that will strike you about KL Rahul's batting is adaptability. In T20, the Karnataka right-hander is an enforcer, particularly in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2016 with the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB)

KL Rahul
KL Rahul

Bangalore: The first thing that will strike you about KL Rahul's batting is adaptability. In T20, the Karnataka right-hander is an enforcer, particularly in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2016 with the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

But in flannels, Rahul is more patient, willing to leave even remotely dangerous balls alone, but all without compromising his hunger for runs.

Also Read: Splendid KL Rahul, but dismissal on 199 was school-boyish

A close look at Rahul's 199 against England at Chepauk yesterday will reveal that his tactics against spin are almost un-Indian. Of course, he shimmies down the pitch against the tweakers but he is equally comfortable in employing the sweep shot, even the reverse avatar of it.

Rahul can credit his stint in the IPL with the Sunrisers Hyderabad and the RCB for that flexibility in his batting.

"Rahul's batting for us in this year's IPL was exciting. The presence of Virat (Kohli) at the other end has helped him a lot, especially in terms of developing the right mindset," said Daniel Vettori, the head coach of RCB.

Also Read: Missing a double ton hurts, says KL Rahul

Rahul's strike rate in the longer version of the game post this year's IPL has risen from 47 to 60. "Rahul is particularly good at long-form cricket because he can adapt to situations very quickly and tries a variety of tactics at nets to challenge the bowlers," said Tom Moody, his coach at Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Karnataka's India batting stalwart GR Viswanath, who has fond memories of Chepauk, said: "Rahul has made fine strides in Test cricket. Now, he looks a more matured batsman and will further improve as he spends more time at the top level and face more challenges around the world."

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