Zaheer Khan praises KL Rahul’s resilience amidst a challenging career, dubbing him ‘KL Rahul 2.0

KL Rahul’s resilient half-century against England has been instrumental in securing a commanding position for the hosts on the second day of the inaugural Test. Zaheer Khan, the former Indian fast bowler, has likened Rahul’s current form to a 2.0 version of his past self, applauding his performance. Former England cricketer Owais Shah and ex-India captain Anil Kumble have also lauded Rahul’s batting prowess and its impact on the ongoing Test match at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium.

In the first innings, Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja both delivered significant half-centuries, driving India to a lead of 175 runs by the conclusion of day two. The score stands at 421/7 after 110 overs.

Rahul exhibited his batting brilliance by notching his 14th Test half-century, leading the scoreboard with an impressive 86 runs off 123 balls. His innings showcased a blend of patience and precision, highlighted by 8 fours and 2 sixes during his time at the crease.

Zaheer, an authority on JioCinema and Sports18, commented on Rahul’s batting, noting: “Considering Rahul’s career trajectory, injury concerns have often plagued him, hindering his ability to capitalize on peak form, a crucial aspect in international cricket. However, recent successes such as the World Cup campaign and the South Africa series indicate a revamped ‘2.0 version’ of Rahul.”

Owais Shah, former England cricketer, noted KL Rahul’s distinct batting style, emphasizing his preference for straight-bat shots over horizontal ones. Shah highlighted Rahul’s minimal use of the sweep shot compared to English batsmen, praising his ability to score boundaries and singles with a straight bat. Despite differing opinions, Shah advocated for Rahul’s consistent inclusion in the team, acknowledging his prowess as a talented batsman.

At Friday’s end-of-play, Jadeja held steady at 81 not out, with Axar Patel offering strong support at 33. Anil Kumble, the legendary former Indian captain and esteemed spinner, weighed in on India’s objective to build a significant lead in this match.

“These two batsmen, Jadeja and Axar, seem poised to extend the lead to 250. They’ve both shown their batting prowess and have laid a solid foundation. I anticipate they’ll aim for a lead of 245-250,” remarked Kumble.