Young Indian batsman KL Rahul has said that playing alongside Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers in the IPL has helped him to learn a lot.Playing his second season for the Royal Challengers, Rahul finished the season as his team’s third-highest run-maker with 397 runs at an average of 44.11.
In 25 IPL matches before this season, Rahul had no fifty. This year, Rahul has four fifties, the first three being consecutive ones. The good performance helped him to get a call from the Indian team for the Zimbabwe tour.
The batsman is hopeful of a good showing in Zimbabwe after a good outing in the recently concluded IPL.
“I spent time with Virat (Kohli) and AB (de Villiers) and asked them questions about what they thought I should do to improve my cricket and be successful in the shortest format.
Their ideas and feedback did help me in improving my batting,” he told reporters at the open media session before the Indian team’s departure to Zimbabwe.
The men in blue will play three ODIs and three T20 Internationals in Zimbabwe from June 11-22.
Rahul, who did not get enough time to prepare for the upcoming tour, said that he will keep the matters simple and stick to his basics.
“I did not have time to prepare for this IPL because I was coming back from an injury. It’s very important to keep things simple and stick to the basics. I will go out there and perform to my strengths, play cricketing shots.
“Wherever we play, the batsmen have a bigger responsibility in ODI and T20 formats, to set up big targets and give that cushion to bowlers. We have been in good form off late in the IPL and in the last couple of years in Ranji Trophy and first class cricket. We are looking out to express ourselves. We are looking out to go out there and have fun,” he added.
India will be having a very busy test schedule after the Zimbabwe tour as they are set to play 13 test matches in the next six months. When asked about it, the right-hander said:”Not going to worry about Test matches, this is my first ODI series with the Indian team, so I will focus on doing well there and figure out how I will be successful in Zimbabwe.
“Once we go there, I don’t know how the wickets are in Zimbabwe. It will be definitely challenging for the opening batsman and it’s a responsibility that I have enjoyed to go out there and give a solid start to my team,” said Rahul who has played five Tests but still uncapped in ODIs.