Punjab Kings (PBKS) captain KL Rahul has a bigger repertoire of shots than anyone else in India, if former India batsman Gautam Gambhir is to be believed. Speaking after Rahul led PBKS to a six-wicket victory over Chennai Super Kings (CSK) with a blistering knock of 98 not out off 42 deliveries in an Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 clash in Dubai on Thursday, Gambhir said the 29-year-old India cricketer may possess “more ability than Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma”. Gambhir added that had Rahul batted throughout this IPL campaign the way he did on Thursday, PBKS would have made the cut for the playoffs.
“If you can bat like this, why don’t you bat like this? And if he can bat like this, probably he has got more ability than Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma. I am not saying it just because I have seen KL Rahul doing it today; he just has it. He has got more shots than anyone else in India. And he has shown it today,” Gambhir told ESPNCricinfo.
“Just go play, man. Let the world cherish, not only India. Show this world your ability. When people talk about Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, probably people will talk more about you because you have got many more shots as compared to anyone else in India,” Gambhir added.
Punjab Kings ended their IPL 2021 season with 12 points from 14 games, just missing out on a play-off spot yet again. But as has been the case in the past few seasons, KL Rahul again shone bright with the bat for his franchise, scoring 626 runs in 13 matches.
Rahul went on top of the Orange Cap list on Thursday, but he could lose out to the likes of Faf Du Plessis, Ruturaj Gaikwad and Shikhar Dhawan as these players will be playing the play-offs as well.
Gambhir was disappointed that Rahul did not show this aggressive side in the previous matches as he feels such performances could have lifted PBKS and helped them make it to the play-offs.
“Had he played like this, I can bet that Punjab Kings would have already qualified by now. It is probably the pressure of captaincy, I don’t know. It is probably the team management that can answer.
“Why do you keep it till the end. Now when you have nothing to lose, you came out all guns blazing. When you had everything to gain, you should have come all guns blazing. And that is where they missed a trick,” Gambhir said.
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