Wasim Jaffer: For K. L. Rahul, the problem is in the mindset

The opener is confused about his game and needs to have a proper game-plan, says Jaffer.

K. L. Rahul failed to fire in the tour of the Caribbean. Photo: AP

India’s otherwise successful tour of the Caribbean turned out to be a disappointing one for opener K. L. Rahul.

The 27-year-old batsman managed to score only 101 runs in four innings. Despite managing steady starts in both the innings in the first Test in Antigua, Rahul could score only 44 and 38.

For ex-India opener and domestic great Wasim Jaffer, Rahul’s problem is all in the mind. “Rahul is one of the few cricketers who has got hundreds in all the three formats. But in Tests, he somehow gets out very softly. The problem is in the mindset,” Jaffer told Sportstar.

Jaffer believes Rahul’s inconsistency cannot be attributed to technical flaws. “He dominates in the domestic circuit or even in the IPL. As soon as he comes to the Indian fold, he is not the same player. He needs to back his game. He goes defensive at times, and then in Tests, you see him hitting the ball over the top. He is confused about his game and needs to have a proper game-plan,” Jaffer, who has played 31 Tests and two One-Day Internationals for India, said.

‘Confused’

“He is technically solid. But he gets confused at times. In Australia, he started hitting over covers or point. That’s not the K. L. Rahul we know. That was quite unusual, so he needs to sort out a game plan and execute it accordingly,” Jaffer said.

Rahul knows where he is going wrong, believes Jaffer. “He has played 33 Tests as opener, so he knows what’s going wrong. The problem is not technical, but it’s all about the mindset and the way he approaches the format,” he said.

With former India cricketers Sourav Ganguly and V. V. S. Laxman already batting for the inclusion of Rohit Sharma in place of Rahul, it would be interesting to see whether the selectors give him another chance when South Africa visits India for Tests and Twenty20 Internationals.