Rohit Sharma is clear I have to bat at No.5: KL Rahul

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KL Rahul on Thursday said that batting out of his comfort zone has helped him to perform well and he is ready to bat at any position as long as he is in the playing XI.

“Firstly, I want to be in the playing XI, that’s the most important thing. What the team requires me to do, I try to do that. I’ve done that throughout the time I played for India” Rahul told reporters after the match.

Batting at No 5, Rahul scored a patient 64 off 103 deliveries and helped India to win the match by four wickets to go 2-0 up in the series.ND

At the post-match presentation, Rahul said that he was not used to playing spin straightaway and called it challenging.

“Batting at No. 5 has just helped me understand my game a little bit better. Given the ball is slightly older, you have to play spin straightaway and that’s not what I am used to usually. Obviously Rohit (Sharma) is very clear that that’s where he wants me tho bat and he’s conveyed that to me. So now I am challenging myself to get used to this position,” Rahul told the broadcasters.

In the recent years, the 30-year-old has batted at different slots in the ODIs. He accepted that getting out of his comfort zone has helped him to thrive under pressure.

“I remember the first Test I batted, I batted at No. 6. Then I opened. Then I was No. 6 at the 2019 World Cup. Then after an injury to Shikhar (Dhawan), I had to go back to open again. I’ve played at No. 5, I’ve played at No. 4, I’ve been asked to wicketkeep. I think it is very fun for me. I have thrived on performing in tough conditions and under pressure.

“It tells me that the team trusts me and backs me. It has helped me understand my batting and myself better. When you decide to choose a team game as a sport or profession, you have to be ready or flexible to do whatever job you’re asked to do,” he added.

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Speaking on the role of wicketkeeping also the right-handed batter said: “I’ve done this for a couple of years now. From the end of 2019, throughout 2020 and a few games in 2021. It’s not something that’s new.”

“The team has given me time to settle into this position and role. When you have the backing of your captain and coach, it helps you focus and bring your 100 percent concentration, which is what the team is expecting, he said.

KL Rahul admitted that the dual role, he dons the 50-over cricket has kept him on his toes.

“Yes, it’s different to what I do in other formats that keeps me on my toes, keeps me challenged — a different role helps me understand my game better,” he said.

“With additional responsibility, you will have to work harder on your fitness as well. Wicketkeeping and batting can be slightly more taxing on the body, because I have not done it for too long, I’ve done it on and off in white ball cricket,” said Rahul.


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