KL Rahul started his IPL 2020 campaign on a brilliant not but has tapered off a little bit since then. Despite him being the highest run-getter in the competition so far (313 runs from six matches), his strike rate is a major concern for the team, who are at the bottom of the points table.
The KXIP captain is being criticised for eating up balls at not forcing the pace after being set. He scored 11 of 16 balls chasing 201 against SRH as they beat them by 69 runs at the end. This was the biggest margin of defeat in terms of runs this season.
Rahul has been slow to capitalize on the starts that he has got in the tournament. Rahul made a 54-ball 69 in Sharjah against Rajasthan Royals – a contest KXIP lost eventually. He scored 63 came off 52 balls in another game where they ended up on the losing side. Their latest defeat against SRH is an evident example of the fact of him not being able to put the charge after being set.
KL Rahul Plays Down Strike-Rate Concerns
However, KL Rahul has played down the factor of strike-rates saying that it is very over-rated and that the chase was all about one partnership.
“Strike-rates are very, very overrated. For me, it’s only about how I can win games for my team. And if on a certain day I think a strike-rate of 120 can win the game for my team, I will do that. This is how I bat and I would like to take responsibility as a leader. We all make mistakes, I’m not saying I have not made a few mistakes but you learn each day as a leader, as a batter” Rahul said after the game.
He further highlighted the fact that it was all about one partnership in the game which they failed to build on. He further said that every player playing a particular game is well aware of his role in the side and it’s all about executing the skills properly.
“It’s a partnership. When we are out in the middle as a batting group, every player has a role in the team and those roles can change in the middle with each game so I try to do the best I can for the team, try and assess the situation and play according to that” said Rahul.
Chris Gayle after being all set to play against Sunrisers Hyderabad missed the game with food poisoning. With Glenn Maxwell struggling to find form, Gayle’s injection at the top will come as a relief for Punjab. This will also allow Rahul to play at number three and anchor the innings. He can then explode in the death overs and play the finisher’s role as well.
With Punjab struggling to stay in the reckoning for the playoffs, the inclusion of Chris Gayle will be their last throw at the dice to save their sinking ship in IPL 2020.