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Sydney hundred gave me immense confidence, says triple centurion KL Rahul

KL Rahul reacts to his triple century in the Ranji Trophy yesterday.

KL Rahul

After becoming the first Karnataka player to score a triple hundred in first-class cricket, opener KL Rahul said that the hundred that he got at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) earlier this month gave him a tremendous amount of confidence.

He had a disastrous debut in the third Test at Melbourne, having been asked to bat in the middle-order, but the right-hander was slotted into a much more familiar position at the top of the order for the next Test the SCG and immediately showed glimpses of his potential by notching up his maiden Test hundred.

“I carried a lot of confidence from that knock. Getting a hundred in an international match, especially for a youngster, gives you immense confidence. I learnt a lot from that tour. I failed in the first game, and then picked myself up and got a good hundred in the second Test. And I carried that same confidence in this match as well,” the 22-year-old said.

“I look up to Virat Kohli”

When he was asked about the cricketers that he looked up to, Rahul said that he draws inspiration from Virat Kohli and keenly follows the way he goes about his business and also looks up to South African cricketer AB de Villiers.

“I look up to Kohli and see how he operates. I also like watching AB de Villiers bat,” he said.

Rahul’s score of 337 is the eighth highest by a batsman in Ranji Trophy history. He, however, fell 4 runs short of eclipsing Sunil Gavaskar’s best score of 340. However, the right-hander wasn't too dejected about not being able to reach the milestone and said he didn’t want to put any undue pressure upon himself.

“After batting for so long, I was tired and not thinking about records. Runs were coming easily, and I did not have to pressure myself. Everyone was on the boundary so I was getting runs easily,” Rahul said.

Felt very nervous when I was in the nineties earlier on: Rahul

He also admitted that he felt extremely apprehensive whenever he was batting in the 90s earlier on and intended to opt a different approach when he was in that phase this time around.

“The 90s ghost hasn’t left me, I got out for 89 in Mysore (against Baroda). You have to find a way to get through it. This time around, I wasn’t very nervous. I didn’t want to stay in 90s for too long, I wanted to get a few boundaries to get into 100, 200 or 300,” the opener said.

He expressed his happiness at being the first Karnataka batsman to have scored a triple hundred in the history of the Ranji Trophy.

“Obviously, I’m feeling very happy. It’s a great feeling to go down in the history books, especially knowing the kind of history and batsmen that Karnataka have produced. To be the only guy to get a 300 from this state feels very, very good,” he said.

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