Kings XI Punjab players have been roaring like lions the world over and the most recent one to make a big impression on the international stage has been our dashing opener Lokesh Rahul.
After scorching the opposition teams in the VIVO Indian Premier League with some hard hitting, Rahul put in another impressive display in limited overs internationals and is now poised to continue his good run in white kits.
He will be fighting for his place in a squad filled to the brim with talent but, based on his recent performances, he will definitely hold an edge.
We listed a few reasons why we believe our stylish swashbuckler could be an ideal fit in the Indian Test team.
So, do you think Rahul will become the naam jo chuna hoga? Let us know in the comments below:
1. Aggression of a Sher
Lokesh Rahul has shown time and time again that he has the ability to score big runs at a fast clip. He has the ability and stamina to play the long innings in trying situations and also to come in and get going from the word go when the team needs to dominate the bowlers. He is the ideal candidate to give the innings a fiery opening or even take forward the momentum that the openers create at the top of the innings. Rahul coming in at three will mean there will be no respite at all for the English bowlers at the top of the innings.
2. Peak form
Aside from the one off-day in the second ODI that India played against England, Rahul has been in prime form in the recent months. He tore apart the competition in the IPL and continued that form in international cricket where he scored a half century against a touring Afghanistan before treating himself to a century in the first T20I against England he played at Manchester.
In his past 7 international innings he has three half centuries, one unbeaten 9 which he scored to finish off the first ODI versus England and just two single-digit dismissals. While the Indian middle-order is fortified with stars, Rahul might get the nod based on current form.
3. Ability to play the moving ball
Rahul has consistently shown his ability to counter the moving ball well. Even in the IPL, when the pressure to get off to a good start was high, he was able to get after the new ball bowlers with textbook technique, never compromising on his artistry for effectiveness.
Against England, where the ball is expected to dart around a bit, Indian will need a player in the top three who can play off the new ball and protect the big middle-order players from the initial spell of fast bowling. Based on his proven ability against the faster bowlers, Rahul fits the bill perfectly.
4. Catches winning matches
Forget the fact that Rahul can be a good back-up behind the wickets, even in the field Rahul has been very effective in the matches he has played. In the 24 matches that he has played he has effected 27 dismissals in the field.
He is the ideal man when it comes to fielding close to the batsman’s face and put them under pressure against the rising ball or a ball that comes out of the rough. His fearlessness and safe hands will help him make a case for himself in an Indian team that demands excellence both with the bat and in the field.