Legendary Indian cricketer, Sunil Gavaskar has come in support of KL Rahul to get a longer rope as an opener in the T20Is, saying that the deputy skipper is a classy player who needs time to get back to the rhythm following his return from injury. During a chat with India Today after the game against Hong Kong, Sunil Gavaskar opined that KL Rahul deserves a longer rope, questioning why the Karnataka batter shouldn’t get it when the team management is backing few others despite lean patches in T20I cricket.
Gavaskar’s comments came after KL Rahul was heavily criticized for his slow knock against Hong Kong. Rahul struggled to get going as he managed just 36 off 39 deliveries. Rahul showed signs of his vintage self when he smashed a couple of well-timed sixes but the vice-captain failed to maintain the tempo throughout the innings.
Rahul got out for a first-ball duck against Pakistan in India’s Asia Cup 2022 opener and hampered India’s progress in the first 10 overs against Hong Kong. Thanks to Suryakumar Yadav’s stunning 26-ball 68 not out and Virat Kohli’s 4-ball 59 not, India posted a match-winning total of 192 on the board in 20 overs against Hong Kong.
Sunil Gavaskar explained, “I think KL Rahul is a class act. With the kind of performance, he has had over the years for India… if you give others a long rope, why can’t we give KL Rahul a long rope? He is your vice-captain as well. You give him a long rope because we have all seen what he is capable of in the T20 format.”
He further added, “He is coming back from an injury, so that the rhythm is not quite there but the rhythm will come and when it comes, it will be devasting for the opposition.”