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Brian Lara Praised ‘Orthodox’ Orange Cap Holder Ruturaj Gaikwad But His 101* Goes In Vain

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

Brian Lara, the former West Indies captain heaped rich praise on CSK opener Ruturaj Gaikwad, saying the young CSK opener is a testament to the fact that big runs can be scored in T20 cricket by playing orthodox cricket.

Brian Lara, the legendary batsman and former West Indies captain said he is hugely impressed by Ruturaj Gaikwad’s batsmanship in the ongoing 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL) after the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) opener hit a record-breaking century, albeit in a losing cause against Rajasthan Royals in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

Ruturaj Gaikwad
Ruturaj Gaikwad (Image Credit: Twitter)

Brian Lara: Ruturaj Gaikwad Is In KL Rahul’s Category

Brian Lara said CSK opener Ruturaj Gaikwad proves that a batsman can score much-needed runs in T20 cricket with orthodox shots and it gives him great pleasure watching the CSK opener dominate the opposition with his silky gameplay.

Brian Lara’s comments came after Ruturaj Gaikwad took the Rajasthan bowlers to the cleaners on Saturday. The opener got off to a slow start, hitting 30 runs off his first 29 balls but he ended up with 101 not out in just 60 balls, helping CSK post a mammoth 189/4 in 20 overs after RR sent them in to bat.

Ruturaj Gaikwad showcased his class, hitting spinners inside-out and sending pacers on a leather hunt with his elegance. He needed a six off the last two balls of the CSK innings against RR to get to his maiden hundred and he missed the penultimate delivery.

However, Ruturaj Gaikwad held his stance and smashed the final delivery into the mid-wicket stands to become the youngest batsman to score a hundred for CSK in the IPL.

Brian Lara (Image Credit: Twitter)
Brian Lara (Image Credit: Twitter)

“Yeah, he could have been 135 if he had got more strike in the end overs. But it was a complete show of batsmanship. That’s what I like about him, seeing how he put that innings together, how he surged in the second half of the innings. He was just tremendous to watch,” Brian Lara told Star Sports.

“He shows that you can play good cricket shots and still score big runs. And that’s what I am proud of as a batsman. It was just remarkable and unbelievable. I will put him now in the KL Rahul category,” Brian Lara said. 

Ruturaj Gaikwad also bagged the Orange Cap from Punjab Kings skipper KL Rahul, becoming the first batsman in IPL 2021 to get to 500 runs. Ruturaj Gaikwad now has 508 runs in 12 matches at an average of over 50 and a strike rate over 140. But Yashasvi Jaiswal’s 50 and Shivam Dube’s unbeaten 64 saw Rajasthan reach 190 in the 18th over.

Ruturaj Gaikwad Carrying CSK’s Batting At The Moment: Ajit Agarkar

The 24-year-old grabbed the limelight in IPL 2020, providing CSK fans something to cheer for with three fifties in a season where the 3-time champions failed to qualify for the play-offs. He has grown from strength to strength, leading the CSK batting unit. Lauding the young opener, former India pacer Ajit Agarkar said Ruturaj Gaikwad is carrying the CSK batting unit on his shoulders in IPL 2021.

“He took a little bit of time to get his first 30 rims and after that, he just took off. For me, he has been the find for CSK in the last season and a half. He is improving with every game. He is carrying their batting at the moment. He needed 6 off the last two balls. He misses one and hits the last one, it’s incredible,” Agarkar said.

Ajit Agarkar Photo: AFP
Ajit Agarkar Photo: AFP

Ruturaj Gaikwad, promising Chennai Super Kings batsman recalled how he overcame his early struggles in Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 where he scored just 5 runs in the first three games.

Gaikwad smashed a hat-trick of half-centuries in the last three games to amass 204 runs averaging 51 in 6 games after scoring 5 runs in the first 3 outings. He scored unbeaten 65, 72, and unbeaten 62 as CSK won the last 3 games but finished 7th.

He has played 12 games in IPL 2021 so far amassing 508 runs averaging 50.8 besides being the 4th batsman to score a ton in IPL 2021 after Devdutt Padikkal, Jos Buttler, and Sanju Samson.

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