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SportsCricketTalent or Favouritism? The curious case of KL Rahul!

Talent or Favouritism? The curious case of KL Rahul!




KL Rahul's continuation in the Test team, despite his repeated failures, is proving to be one of the most curious cases in Indian cricket.

Not many have survived the kind of failures that the man from Bengaluru has endured. Fewer have received such unwavering support from the who's who of Indian cricket, making for a fascinating watch.

There aren't too many of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in same frame. But there was one shot right after the Indian team finished its Asia Cup campaign in Dubai, where Kohli was interviewed by his skipper for the BCCI TV after his much-awaited 71st hundred, against Afghanistan.

That interaction stood out for a different reason.

“We shouldn't ignore KL's knock as we know how important it is for KL to be in a good head space, heading into the World Cup. We know what he can do in this format, plays very clean shots, and once he bats in T20 cricket, our team looks even more strong,” Kohli said when Rohit asked how the former skipper was helping the other players.

The only thing that appeared a bit out of place in that particular interview was that the question on Rahul didn't seem organic. It seemed as if they were trying to make a statement in support of Rahul on behalf of the team.

The two biggest names in that dressing room wanted to get a protective shield around a teammate, whom they consider a minefield of talent but whose deliverables have been few and far in between.

Nearly six months have passed since that interaction and calls for Rahul's ouster have reached a crescendo after three successive failures against Australia. Prior to facing Australia, he had four scores of under 25 against Bangladesh, not the most feared among the Test opposition. What has surprised many is the carte blanche that the Rahul Dravid-led team management has given to the Bangalore man.

In the last two weeks, three senior members of the Indian team management have dead batted questions on Rahul's form, but there was something eerily similar to their .

In Nagpur, the PTI had asked batting coach Vikram Rathour, also a former selector, about Rahul's form. Initially, he didn't wish to comment but then spoke about his last two Test hundreds.

“To be fair to KL, he (Rahul) has scored two hundreds in his last 10 Tests – one in England and other in South Africa and also has a couple of fifties. So yeah, I don't think we are there,” Rathour had said in Nagpur after the second day's play against Australia.

Cut to Delhi, at the post-match interactions of coach Dravid and skipper Rohit, the basic narrative on Rahul seemed to be cut from the same cloth.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.


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