Jasprit Bumrah praises KL Rahul how hit form in the 1st T20I after a long struggle
Rahul having missed the limited-overs series in Australia and New Zealand is making a comeback into the Indian team.
Updated - Feb 25, 2019 3:04 pm
India disappointed their fans in the first T20I against Australia played in Visakhapatnam on Sunday, thanks to a batting collapse that prevented them from putting up a big total after Australian captain Aaron Finch won the toss and invited them to bat. Although Rohit Sharma fell cheaply, the second-wicket partnership of 55 runs between KL Rahul and captain Virat Kohli gave the Men in Blue some hope before the slide began. India finished at 126 for 7 in 20 overs and even though their bowlers gave their best to defend the total, Australia won the game in the final ball of the match.
However, one positive from the game for the Indians was Rahul’s return to form. The premier batsman has been facing a prolonged lean phase in his international career and despite getting several opportunities, could not make an impact. Last month, he was hit by controversy on a television show along with Hardik Pandya and was suspended for some time.
Rahul missed the limited-overs series in Australia and New Zealand even though the suspension was later withdrawn and he was asked to play the England Lions for India ‘A’ at home instead. He hit a couple of 80s in two unofficial Tests against them before getting picked for the Australia series and eventually made some runs in an international game in Vishakhapatnam. Opening the match with Rohit, Rahul scored 50 off 36 balls and hit six fours and a six during his knock.
He registered a 50-run partnership with Kohli before falling to Man of the Match Nathan Coulter-Nile in the 13th over of the Indian innings. His team and supporters would have loved to see him continue for some more time as his dismissal saw a series of wickets tumbling and India lost their plot midway. His mate Jasprit Bumrah, who bowled well (3 for 16) to keep India in the game till the last, was elated to see Rahul hitting form.
Rahul looked the best batsman today
“It’s always good when you’ve got good competition in the team. He looked the best batsman today I feel because he was playing with a lot of composure, he started off playing good shots and he was playing conventional shots. It’s always good when a player like him is back in form,” Bumrah, said in the post-match press conference.
The right-arm pacer bowled an excellent second-last over in which he gave just two runs and felt the hosts were 15-20 runs short but still they did their best to defend the modest total.