Best yet to come says India's Rahul after key World Cup innings
Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP)
KL Rahul insists his tone-setting innings in India's World Cup win over Pakistan was just a glimpse of what he can accomplish.
Rahul earned praise for his composed knock at Old Trafford on Sunday after taking one of the opening slots in place of the injured Shikhar Dhawan.
Rahul made 57 off 78 deliveries in his 136-run opening stand with century maker Rohit Sharma to put India on course for an 89-run win via the DLS method.
India icon Sachin Tendulkar hailed the importance of Rahul's knock, while former captain Krishnamachari Srikkanth also praised the batsman.
The 27-year-old Rahul, who had previously batted at number four and six, is happy to have grabbed his chance but doesn't believe he has peaked yet.
"I've had to wait for my chance and I'm just happy that I got to bat in the top three," Rahul said.
"If you see anywhere in the world, the other openers have played so well for India, they've owned those positions.
"As a kid or as a young cricketer growing up this is what you dream to do.
"I'm really happy that I got the opportunity and I give myself six out of ten! Hopefully I carry on the confidence and get better."
Rahul's innings, which comes after India were dealt a blow by Dhawan's hand injury ruling the left-handed batsman out for at least two weeks, has boosted the team's morale.
With Dhawan unlikely to be fit before the team's all-important match against hosts England on June 30, Rahul is expected to open with Sharma for the next two games.
Rahul said that seeing off the new ball would be key on English pitches as they did against a threatening Pakistan pace attack led by Mohammad Amir at Old Trafford.
"With the new ball, against any bowler, it's important to see off the first few overs," said Rahul.
"Those first few overs are obviously the most difficult time because you don't know what the ball is going to do in the air and off the seam.
"Once we got through those, we felt a lot more comfortable. For an opening batsman it's important to hit a few balls in the middle of the bat and get a few boundaries going."
? 2019 AFP