Tom Moody has backed the BCCI for giving a Test recall to KL Rahul and believes that the KXIP skipper, who has Down Under experience under his belt, can end up having an outstanding red-ball career. Moody noted that Rahul, who averages 34 in Tests, is an all-format player who oozes class.
Two years ago, KL Rahul endured his darkest hour as a cricketer on the shores of Australia. Chosen as the opener for the 2018/19 Border Gavaskar Trophy, Rahul amassed an embarrassing 57 runs across 5 innings at an average of 11.40, after which his Test career pretty much came to a temporary halt. Thankfully for him, the right-hander regained his mojo in the other formats and, earlier this week, on the back of an impressive showing in the ongoing IPL, the 28-year-old was handed a red-ball recall by the national selectors, who named Rahul in the tour of Australia.
The selectors’ call to pick Rahul for Tests has received a lot of backlash from fans but renowned coach Tom Moody has backed the Indian selectors’ decision. Moody, who coached Rahul during his time at SRH, termed the 28-year-old a classy player and noted that Rahul could turn things around due to having sufficient experience under his belt.
“They have picked class. He may not have recent form in Test cricket. KL Rahul has class,” Moody said in a conversation with ESPNCricinfo.
“They have selected someone who has experience Down Under. Not every player gets it right the first time. I think he is a three-format player.”
Rahul is no muck against the red-ball, having scored 5 centuries and over 2000 runs, and Moody opined that there is no reason why the KXIP skipper cannot grab Test cricket by the scruff of its neck. The 55-year-old observed that all Rahul needs at this stage in his carer is confidence.
“He can easily grab the Test cricket by the scruff of the neck and have an outstanding cricketer. We know he has the game; he just needs confidence in the same.”
Barring the Test recall, it was double delight for Rahul as he was also named India’s vice-skipper for the limited-overs sides, in the absence of Rohit Sharma. Former Indian cricketer Deep Dasgupta, however, believes the management could have waited before naming the Karnataka man the vice-skipper.
“Maybe announcing the vice-captain could have been on hold. They could have waited for Rohit’s injury details for another week, and then gone ahead with it [declaring the vice-captain]," Dasgupta was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.
It remains to be seen if Rohit will be reinstated as the vice skipper, should he prove his fitness and get added back to the squad.