KL Rahul's resurgence as captain in IPL
KL Rahul could have the best season as captain this year with Lucknow Super Giants.|
KL Rahul is one of the best batters in world cricket and the maturity with which he bats and controls the innings shows the amount of class and talent that he possesses. A calm demeanor shows how good he is when it comes to leading a team in a tournament as big as the Indian Premier League.
KL Rahul is one of the best batters in world cricket in the current era. The right-handed batter has all the shots in the book and has the ability to take the game away from the opposition almost single-handedly. He has performed at the top-most level for India and has centuries in Test matches in places like England and Australia which are considered to be the toughest for a batter who comes from the sub-continent. The thing that stands out the most for KL Rahul is the way he switches gears from T20Is to ODIs and then Tests.
The cricketers who play at the top-most level know the kind of mental ability that is required to go from one format to the other. There are not many cricketers who can market themselves as cricketers across formats. But, KL Rahul is one such player who can say that and add to that the burden of captaincy in the IPL. It takes a lot of mental strength to do achieve all of this. He does this on a regular basis. Rahul has seen his fair share of ups and downs during his career. He has been in and out of the national side, donned the wicket-keeping gloves and done well for India overall. So, he knows what it takes to be an international cricketer and that too a successful one at the highest possible level.
But, KL Rahul is human too and he has not done well as a skipper in the Indian Premier League. Make no mistake, KL Rahul has done exceptionally well in the IPL as a batter for his former franchise Punjab Kings (earlier known as Kings XI Punjab) but he has never been able to get close to an IPL trophy. You can draw similarities between him and Virat Kohli when it comes to winning the cash-rich league. But, Kohli's intensity always remained high even though the trophy eluded him. But, Rahul's body language used to change and it looked like he used to be under immense pressure when he started losing games with Punjab Kings and tried to carry the batting order on his own shoulders.
On 19, December 2019, KL Rahul was named captain of the Punjab Kings in the IPL after Ravichandran Ashwin was removed from the job. KL Rahul is one of the best batters in the Indian Premier League. Rahul's consistency in this tournament since the 2018 season has been unmatched and any franchise would want to have such a player on their team.
In 2018, KL Rahul played 14 matches and scored 659 runs with an average of 54.91. This was the first time that KL Rahul had done so well in the IPL. After that in 2019, the right-handed batter was eagerly being looked at and he did not fail to impress. The young batter in 2019 smashed in 593 runs in 14 matches with an average of 53.90 showing that what he did last season was not a fluke.
After becoming captain of the Punjab Kings, KL Rahul as a batter did even better than what he did in the previous years. As captain, he scored 670 runs in IPL 2020 with an average of 55.83. But, his team finished 6th with 12 points and crashed out of the tournament. It seemed as if KL Rahul was taking too much pressure on himself as no one else was as good as him with the bat.
In 2021, KL Rahul captained Punjabs Kings once again with the hopes of doing better than what had happened in the last season. Like every other season, the right-handed batter was phenomenal with the bat and amassed 626 runs from just 13 games with an unbelievable average of 62.60 which just shows how good he is. However, his side finished 6th again with the exact same points.
Punjab Kings and KL Rahul parted ways as he was not retained before the mega-auction of the IPL which came as a surprise to many. But, Rahul found a new franchise in Lucknow Super Giants as they bought KL Rahul for a whopping sum of INR 17 crore. They built their team from scratch just like all other teams during the mega-auction and managed to do a good job which is now showing in the results that the debutant franchise is getting.
He has the likes of Gautam Gambhir in the management who is a proven leader and has won the IPL twice with Kolkata Knight Riders. As of now, Lucknow Super Giants is number two on the points table with 3 wins from 4 matches and only behind KKR because of the net run rate.
KL Rahul's captaincy looks much better and his side is also well balanced as everybody in the squad is doing well. With the right kind of support and faith in his team, the Lucknow Super Giants skipper looks much more confident and can do wonders with his new franchise.
Rahul's fans might be looking at his best season as captain and he and his team have the potential to lift the title in their very first season in the IPL.