"I feel he is doing better as a captain" - Irfan Pathan on KL Rahul's leadership qualities

KL Rahul will lead India in the five-match T20I series against South Africa (Credit: PTI)
KL Rahul will lead India in the five-match T20I series against South Africa (Credit: PTI)

Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan believes KL Rahul has matured as captain after a few leadership stints in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The Karnataka cricketer has been appointed as captain in the absence of regular skipper Rohit Sharma. All-format cricketers have been rested with the all-important fifth Test against England, scheduled to commence on July 1 in Birmingham.

Rahul, who is yet to win a game in international cricket as captain, will have the huge task of leading a young bunch of cricketers against a star-studded South African team.

Speaking exclusively on the Star Sports show, "Follow The Blues," Irfan Nathan reckoned that KL Rahul is doing better as a captain.

He said:

"Definitely an exam for all the players but most importantly KL Rahul as the leader. I think, so far, whenever you go in the exam, you want to prepare well. He has prepared well – he has taken Lucknow Super Giants to the Playoffs and he did well."

Pathan added:

"According to me, he has become better as a captain. Because, previously, when he captained Punjab, he was focused more on taking care and understanding his leadership, but eventually, now I feel he is doing better as a captain.”
Suresh Raina said, "KL Rahul has looked very calm and composed as a captain in recent times and the players selected need a leader like KL Rahul". (On Star).

KL Rahul recently guided the Lucknow Super Giants to the IPL 2022 playoffs in their maiden season. They finished third in the league stage but lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Eliminator to crash out of the competition.

"He will come out a good leader" - Irfan Pathan on captain KL Rahul

The cricketer-turned-commentator also added that the 30-year-old will get better with more opportunities and come out as a good captain.

Irfan Pathan continued:

“There's still a lot more scope for improvement and I feel as time passes, he will get better and better. He is calm and a very experienced player. As a captain, I believe he will keep doing better because I have a lot of expectations from him and I'm sure he will come out a good leader.”

So far, Rahul has led India in three T20Is against South Africa, losing all the games. He also led the side in the second Test against the Proteas in Johannesburg in place of Virat Kohli. However, the Indian team ended up on the losing side that time as well.

Team India Captain KL Rahul has been ruled out of the T20I series against South Africa owing to a right groin injury while Kuldeep Yadav will miss out in the T20I series after getting hit on his right hand while batting in the nets last evening.@Paytm #INDvSA

Meanwhile, Rahul will have to wait a little longer to better his captaincy record as he has been ruled out of the upcoming T20I series with a groin injury.

Vice-captain Rishabh Pant will lead the side in KL Rahul's absence while Hardik Pandya has been appointed as vice-captain for the series.

Spinner Kuldeep Yadav has also been ruled out of the series with an injury to his right hand.

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Edited by Diptanil Roy
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