KL Rahul has the potential to be the next Sachin Tendulkar or Sunil Gavaskar, says Farokh Engineer
Former Indian cricketer Farokh Engineer seems to be pretty impressed by KL Rahul's prowess in the red-ball cricket. He finds the 26-year-old's potential in the gentleman's game to match the likes of little master Sunil Gavaskar and master blaster Sachin Tendulkar.
The veteran of 335 first-class matches feels that KL might play a very crucial role in the upcoming 5-match series against England, the first of which would be played at Edgbaston, Birmingham from August 1.
Rahul, a highly aggressive right-handed batsman who possesses the ability to play attacking as well as patient game, has 1512 runs at an average 40.86 in 24 Tests with 4 hundred and 11 fifties. His highest score is 199 runs against England in 2016.
KL Rahul's recent performances
The debutant of 2014-15 Border-Gavaskar series exhibited a series of fantabulous performances in the 11th edition of IPL.
He finished as one of the leading runs scorers in the cash-rich tournament with over 659 runs in 14 games at an average of 54.91 with 6 fifties and a jaw-dropping strike rate of 158.41.
In fact, KL transformed his domestic performances in the international arena too, he smashed a fifty in the solitary Test match against Afghanistan. He then notched a match-winning ton at the legendary stadium of Old Trafford in the 1st T20I game, which helped the Indian team draw the first blood in the 3-match T20I series against England. India won the series 2-1.
He couldn't do much with the bat in the first two ODIs and had to make way for Dinesh Karthik in the final ODI which India lost. The final scoreline in the ODIs read 2-1 in favour of England.
Farokh Engineer's unrelenting trust over KL Rahul's potence
Despite his ups and lows in the past couple of games, the former Indian cricketer heavily believes on KL Rahul's match-winning prowess and feels he would be a vital cog in team India's victories in the upcoming games against England.
During an interview with Firstpost, Farokh Engineer said," KL Rahul is superb. Rahul could be like Gavaskar or Tendulkar according to me. He has got the potential to be a great batsman. He is very talented. He plays with a straight bat, and I am very very impressed with him."
"Rahul will play a hell of a crucial role. KL Rahul will be a prime candidate. I will be very surprised and disappointed if he doesn't do well. And I feel he will do well," said the former cricketer who has been part of 46 Test matches during his cricketing days.
India's key players in the upcoming battles
The 80-year-old veteran feels that Indian skipper Virat Kohli, opener KL Rahul and the rising sensation of Indian cricket, Kuldeep Yadav would be playing the role of match-winners for the visiting team.
"Virat Kohli should play a very important part. KL Rahul, I think will play a fantastic part. If was a captain, I would certainly pick Kuldeep Yadav too. It depends whether you play him straightaway or at whose expense do you play him," said the former cricketer with over 13,436 first-class runs under his belt.
India's victory on cards?
Farokh seemed pretty confident about India's victory in the English conditions. He also mentioned that this could be a golden ticket for Team India to establish a series win over the foreign soil, against a unit like England which possesses the likes of James Anderson, Stuart Broad, skipper Joe Root and Alastair Cook.
"Absolutely. This is the best chance to win a series and we should win. I am not a gambling man but I would back our boys. I would back them through patriotism in any case but my gut feeling is that we will beat England in England because we have a very confident squad," said the former wicket-keeper batsman of the Indian Cricket team.