ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Brian Lara backs KL Rahul to see-off the new ball, says he has the technique to open innings

Former West Indies batsman Brian Lara expects KL Rahul to flourish in his new role as the Indian opener, says he has the technique to see-off the new ball

Press Trust of India, Jun 21, 2019 18:17:47 IST

Mumbai: Legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara believes that facing the new ball won't be a problem for K L Rahul as the right-handed batsman has a good technique. Rahul opened in the game against Pakistan last Sunday as regular opener Shikhar Dhawan was ruled out due to a thumb injury.

 The Karnataka batsman made a patient 57 off 78 balls and shared a solid 136-run stand with Rohit Sharma in the game which India won by 89 runs via the DLS method. With Dhawan now ruled out of the entire World Cup and replaced by young Rishabh Pant, Rahul looks set to open with Rohit in the remaining matches.
ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Brian Lara backs KL Rahul to see-off the new ball, says he has the technique to open innings

KL Rahul playing a shot against Pakistan. Reuters

Lara, a Star Sports expert, feels that Rahul will relish this opportunity. "Rahul is India's second-best batsman after Virat Kohli and he has been the opening batsman for IPL (Indian PremierLeague) as well."

"While batting at number four, India has already made a masterstroke as just in case there is a mishap at the beginning of the game, Rahul has shown in the warm-up match that he can come in at number four and play like an opening batsman," 50-year-old Lara, who played 131 Tests and 299 ODIs, was quoted as saying in a release issued Friday.

The 27-year-old Mangaluru-born Rahul has so far scored 94 runs in three matches in the ongoing World Cup. He also scored a brisk 108 off just 99 balls while batting at number four in the warm-up match against Bangladesh.

"I think he will relish the opportunity of opening the batting after Shikhar Dhawan has been ruled out. Especially with the technique that he has, facing the new ball is not going to be an issue for him," added Lara, one of the batting greats of his time.

Lara expects some special performances from Rahul. "I am looking forward to seeing something special from him. For me, he is going to be one of the top run-scorers in the World Cup," Lara signed off.

Unbeaten India next take on Afghanistan in Southampton on Saturday.

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Updated Date: Jun 21, 2019 18:17:47 IST

World Cup 2019 Points Table

Team p w l nr pts
India 9 7 1 1 15
Australia 9 7 2 0 14
England 9 6 3 0 12
New Zealand 9 5 3 1 11
Pakistan 9 5 3 1 11
Sri Lanka 9 3 4 2 8
South Africa 9 3 5 1 7
Bangladesh 9 3 5 1 7
West Indies 9 2 6 1 5
Afghanistan 9 0 9 0 0

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
6 Sri Lanka 3462 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6420 123
2 India 6807 122
3 New Zealand 4763 113
4 Australia 5470 112
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 4756 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
6 New Zealand 4056 254