“I Don’t Buy It”: As KL Rahul Defends Slow Batting, Ravi Shastri’s Sharp Counter

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Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) secured a 10-run victory over Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 clash on Wednesday in a low-scoring match. Both the teams managed to put over 80 runs on the board in their respective first-wicket partnerships but could still finish only around the 150-run mark. When LSG skipper KL Rahul was asked about the low-scoring match, he cited the pitch as the reason. However, former India head coach Ravi Shastri isn’t in agreement with the LSG captain’s reasoning.

KL Rahul has been subjected to plenty of criticism of late, especially with regards to his strike-rate in the shortest format of the game. Against Lucknow, he scored a 32-ball 39. After the conclusion of the match, Shastri admitted that Rahul needs to get the strike-rate up.

“Absolutely (needs to get the strike up). All that talk about 160, I don’t buy it. When you have two chances, if you convert that 39 to 60 or 70, 160 becomes 175. You need someone in the top 3 to carry on and play that long innings,” Ravi Shastri told Star Sports.

“If the Rajasthan Royals team had done that. They would have won this game. Plenty to learn from this game for both sides on how to approach and taking chances at the right time. It’s still early days in the tournament. Rajasthan is No. 1 and Lucknow is No. 2 and they will learn a lot from this,” he added.

At the end of the match, Rahul said that he thought 160 would be a par score on the Jaipur wicket that was keeping low and wasn’t easy to bat on.

“In the 10 over mark, the message me and Kyle sent out was 160 would be a good total on this track, they have some good bowlers as well who exploited the conditions. We fell 10 short but made up with the ball. And there was no dew so made it fair for both teams. We game in here yesterday and saw 180 would be a par score, but the first over from Boult, me and Kyle had a chat and realised this isn’t a 180 wicket. The ball was keeping a bit low, so we gave ourselves time in the powerplay. Maybe if we played a bit better, we might have got 170 as well,’ he had said.

Though Lucknow are second in the IPL 2023 points table, there remains plenty of scope for improvement.

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