"He didn't go anywhere" - Ravichandran Ashwin on fans claiming that KL Rahul is back

India v Australia - 1st ODI
KL Rahul hit a fine half-century in 1st ODI vs Australia. (Pic: Getty)

Ravichandran Ashwin recently quashed claims that KL Rahul is back with a bang following the batter's match-winning half-century in the first ODI against Australia in Mumbai.

Ashwin claimed that Rahul didn't go anywhere, especially in the 50-over format. He urged fans to assess the performances of the players correctly before trolling them. Here's what he said about KL Rahul while speaking on his YouTube channel:

"Immediately after his [KL Rahul's] knock, people are like, "KL Rahul is back!" KL Rahul didn't go anywhere when it comes to ODI cricket to be back. He didn't go anywhere for us to put him down one day and then suddenly celebrate him the other day. We shouldn't do that.
"In the sporting world, we should know how to assess a player's performance correctly. If we don't do that, we will back all the wrong people and will play all the wrong people."

Ravichandran Ashwin further noted that people are quick to slam cricketers after a few underwhelming outings. The Tamil Nadu-born cricketer reckoned that KL Rahul has been exceptional in ODIs, hailing him as one of the best middle-order batters in world cricket at the moment.

"If the people we like do something good and get trending on Twitter, we will start celebrating them and worshipping them like anything," Ashwin continued. "But if they are going through a bad patch, we will not appreciate or celebrate their value or the magnitude of what they are doing.
"KL Rahul is doing a very difficult role for India with ease. He has been a proper box office in ODIs. He has got phenomenal numbers batting at number five. Go and search if you can find anyone even close to him in terms of his numbers in ODI cricket."

KL Rahul, who was under the scanner for his poor form, saved India the blushes in the first ODI against Australia. He remained unbeaten on 75, helping the Men in Blue chase down the 189-run target with five wickets to spare after an early collapse.

"There isn't even one cricketer at the moment who bats at No.5 in ODIs and has made a mark for himself - Ravichandran Ashwin on KL Rahul's difficult role

Ravichandran Ashwin further stated that it is important to understand that KL Rahul has a very challenging role to play in the middle order of the ODI side.

He suggested that there is currently no batter in international cricket who has been able to carve a niche for himself by batting at the tricky No.5 position. The seasoned campaigner named MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, and Michael Bevan as the few batters who excelled in this role.

"Sometimes, it is very funny, right? Consider everyone currently batting at No.5 in ODI cricket currently," Ashwin elaborated. "There isn't even one cricketer at the moment who bats at No.5 in ODIs and has made a mark for himself because it is a very tough position to bat.
"Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni were the only two guys who batted mostly at No.5 in ODIs and made a mark for themselves. For Australia, it was Michael Bevan."

Rahul will next be seen in action on Wednesday, March 22, when India and Australia lock horns in the third and final ODI of the series. The deciding contest will take place at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

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Edited by Ankush Das
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