Dubai, September 25
Kings XI Punjab captain KL Rahul, who made a scintillating century against Royal Challengers Bangalore, said he was lacking in confidence heading into the team’s second IPL fixture.
Rahul starred with an unbeaten 132 off 69 balls as KXIP outplayed RCB by 97 runs here on Thursday.
“I have actually been not so confident (hitting it this well). I had a chat with Maxi (Glenn Maxwell) yesterday, he asked me how I was feeling, I said I was not feeling completely in control of my batting and he said you must be joking, you are hitting really well,” Rahul said at the post-match presentation.
He had already spoken about his fears leading up to the IPL, considering he was coming back after a five-month-long break due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Quite honestly, I was nervous but I knew if I spend time in the middle, hit a few balls from the middle of the bat, it will all settle down. I try to do (the same routine as I did when I was a player) but as a captain, you have shortened time and you are running around and doing a lot of things,” Rahul said.
He is captaining in the IPL for the first time.
“I still try to maintain the same routine. Once I am in the middle and during the toss is the only time I feel like a captain and otherwise I try to balance being a player and the captain,” he said.
After Rahul starred with the bat, KXIP bowlers put a disciplined performance to bundle out RCB for 109 in 17 overs.
“It’s as complete a team performance as it can get. We had a few different plans going into this game. We knew RCB have a power-packed batting line up and we had to get 2-3 wickets up front and that also meant putting runs on the board, we know what these guys can do if they get set. The analyst, coaches and the management will be happy.”
He was all praise for young leg-spinner Ravi Bishnoi.
“Something that has impressed me in him (Bishoni’s heart of coming back even after an expensive start). I watched the U-19 World Cup. He has a lot of fight in him. Every time I throw the ball he wants to do well, he was a little nervous bowling at guys like Finchy and AB, once he got through that he did well,” added Rahul. PTI