Team India skipper Virat Kohli on Sunday said that KL Rahul as a wicketkeeper-batsman allows the team to play an extra batsman.
Rahul, who kept for India in the recently-concluded ODI series against Australia after regular wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant got injured, impressed with his glove work behind the stumps. Meanwhile, the right-handed batsman also scored 146 runs in 3 innings.
“It definitely allows us to play an extra batsman. It is an important factor while choosing the side. You can look at Rahul Dravid’s example in the 2003 World Cup, when he started keeping behind the stumps, the balance of the side became a lot better and the side was able to play an extra batsman,” Kohli said after the post-match press conference at Chinnaswamy as quoted by IANS.
In the first match Rahul batted at number 3, in the second match he came at number 5 and in the final match the Karnataka batsman opened the innings in absence of injured opener Shikhar Dhawan. However, the inconsistency in batting position could not hamper Rahul’s impecabble form.
“KL Rahul is open to playing anywhere, because he is a proper batsman. He is not a guy who will go slam bang from ball one, but he can do what he did in Rajkot, he has reflected on what he needs to do in the past six months. It is a boost that he can keep wickets as well,” Kohli said.
Impressed with Rahul’s overall effort in the field, Kohli said: “Well look we have what we have in the team. As I said, Rahul brings in balance into the side. We have to persist with it as he has done well. We have to see whether it works, you cannot chop and change. I do not see why we should change this playing XI.”