Team hasn’t forgotten what I have done for two years: KL Rahul

KL Rahul has been missing from the national team’s dressing room for some time now after being ruled out before the start of the T20I home series against South Africa in June.

FILE PHOTO: KL Rahul has had his share of injuries and the latest was a surgery after being detected with sports hernia.

FILE PHOTO: KL Rahul has had his share of injuries and the latest was a surgery after being detected with sports hernia. | Photo Credit: GETTY IMAGES

KL Rahul has been missing from the national team’s dressing room for some time now after being ruled out before the start of the T20I home series against South Africa in June.

Injuries haven’t been kind to KL Rahul but, as he got ready to lead India in one more series, he couldn’t thank the team management enough for remembering his contribution in the last two years while he was out of the team for the last couple of months.

“You might be out for two months but they haven’t forgotten what you have done for the team and the country in last two-three years. Players actually thrive in such an environment,” the Indian captain said on the eve of the first ODI against Zimbabwe.

“It is this kind of environment that can help a player transform from being a good player to a great player, playing a lot more match-winning innings for his team,” said Rahul, who has an average of above 46 and five hundreds in 42 games.

“It is very important for a player to get the backing of selectors, coach and captain. It gives you so much confidence that your mindset is clear and you can focus on the things that are necessary. It becomes easy for a player that your support group is backing you,” the stylish right-handed batter added.

Rahul has had his share of injuries and the latest was a surgery after being detected with sports hernia.

“Injuries are part of sport and that part hasn’t been too kind to me, but it’s part of the journey, and you got to take the good and the bad,” Rahul added.

He has been missing from the national team’s dressing room for some time now after being ruled out before the start of the T20I home series against South Africa in June.

“I have been out for two months, and just to get back to the dressing room and have that chat and laughter around the group is great,” he said.

Originality is very important, and Rahul believes that in his short tenure as leader, he has tried to be himself and let others in the team maintain their individuality.

“I can’t go out there and be someone else. Then I won’t be fair to myself, to the team, or to the game. I try and be myself and let the other players be themselves as they want,” Rahul said when asked if he had tried to follow MS Dhoni’s footsteps.

“I can’t even compare myself with these guys (Dhoni), their numbers and achievements are far greater in terms of what they have done for the country and I don’t think any name could be taken in the same breath,” he said.

“And this is my second series as captain, and obviously, I have played under him (Dhoni) and learnt a lot from him as a player. As you have been playing for so many years, you will pick some good qualities from these guys.”

When you have a few players who have played a lot and some making comebacks from injuries, it becomes imperative that the skipper manages the pack well.

“Myself, Kuldeep (Yadav) and Deepak (Chahar), we were all at NCA (National Cricket Academy) and were all preparing for this series. So, I know they have prepared well and they know what they need to do. For me, it’s about managing them and giving them that confidence, allow them to express themselves, and have that freedom to do what they want to do,” the skipper said.

Rahul understands that it is a challenge he would relish as skipper.

“It will be (challenging) for any leader as to how good you are in managing your players and bringing the best out of them. Everybody is in a different place in their careers, and a few of us have come back from injuries, a few have played a lot of cricket and how you manage their bodies and how you manage mindset and nervousness of guys who are coming after a long break, those are challenges as a leader,” he explained.

While Kuldeep and Chahar are making comebacks, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Mohammed Siraj have been part of the ODI set-up for the past six months.

“Avesh, Siraj and Prasidh have been playing continuously since the start of the IPL (Indian Premier League). It is a little bit about managing their bodies and little bit of their strategies and sitting and speaking with them,” said Rahul.

For more updates, follow Sportstar on :
Download Sportstar App
Download Sportstar App
 I-DAY SPECIAL: 75 ICONIC SPORTING MOMENTS
Connect With Us