The versatile batter has established himself as one of the pivotal assets in the side.

The Indian cricket team has found a real gem in the form of KL Rahul. The versatile batter has established himself as one of the pivotal assets in the side, and his presence is highly crucial across formats. Not so long ago, Rahul had lost his place in the Test team, and there were issues surrounding his technique. However, the Karnataka player worked on his batting, and a return to the Test side in England has seen Rahul thrive. In white-ball cricket, Rahul has been a mainstay in the Indian side, and he has now become the primary option in both ODIs and T20Is. In the first Test against South Africa, Rahul struck a match-winning century to highlight his growing stock in the sport. Here we analyze why Rahul is the most versatile batter for Team India.

Test cricket

A lot has changed for Team India of late as far as Test cricket is concerned. Once Rahul was dropped, India promoted Rohit Sharma up the order, and he found success batting alongside both Mayank Agarwal and Shubman Gill. With Mayank and Gill injured during India’s visit to England, Rahul, a backup customer, got a chance. The stylish cricketer didn’t look back and delivered the goods. In four Tests against England, Rahul amassed 315 runs at 39.37. He hit one ton and a fifty. Rahul was solid with his technique and battled past the ghosts he endured with his sloppy footwork earlier. He also grabbed the chance in South Africa, scoring a valuable century in Centurion as India beat SA to take a 1-0 lead. Overall, in 41 Tests, Rahul has 2,467 runs at 36.27.

Limited-overs cricket

Rahul has become a driving force in T20Is. He is now the main choice alongside Rohit to open the innings. Rahul’s aggressive batting has allowed Rohit to be the anchorman and what the former has done so well is bring in the solid consistency. Rahul is the ideal T20I player who has been the best batter over the last four seasons in the Indian Premier League. His IPL success has transitioned into T20 internationals. In the ICC T20 World Cup 2021, Rahul dazzled and was India’s top run-scorer. In T20Is, he has piled up 1,831 runs at 40.68, hitting two tons and 16 fifties.

Meanwhile, Rahul has also shown a lot of versatility in ODI cricket. India had dropped Rishabh Pant in between as Rahul donned the keeping gloves. With India preferring Rohit and Shikhar Dhawan upfront, Rahul was a desired choice in the middle-order. He came in and played some match-winning knocks. He also played in the middle-order role during the ICC 2019 World Cup. What Rahul can do so well is both open or play anywhere as a floater in the ODI side. This is huge for any side. 

Also, what makes Rahul so versatile is his ability to serve as a keeper. That can give India more options and balance, keeping the 2023 World Cup in mind. Since 2019, Rahul has become a regular feature in ODI cricket. He has scored consistently, and that has helped him establish himself. In 38 ODIs, Rahul has managed 1,509 runs at 48.67, hitting five tons and nine fifties.

What’s the road ahead?

Rahul has to keep going and make sure he chips in with defining scores. His value will be crucial for India, keeping the T20 World Cup in mind to be held this year. Next year, he will be pivotal as India would want to do well in the ODI World Cup and also qualify for the World Test Championship final. India have already handed leadership roles to Rahul in the SA tour, and this has happened with keeping the future in mind. He can be a customer for Team India with his class and versatility.

Leave a comment