Former Pakistani captain Salman Butt has selected KL Rahul to replace the injured Mayank Agarwal as India’s first test against England on Wednesday at Trent Bridge.
After Shubman Gill had already been excluded from the entire series, Agarwal, the backup opener, should return to the test eleven. But an ongoing concussion in a network session two days before the game from a blow from a bouncer from Mohammed Siraj has forced him to go to the bench for the Nottingham game.
Salman Butt suggested that KL Rahul should be the batsman who hits at the top for several reasons. KL Rahul last played a friendly against West Indies in September 2019 before being replaced by Rohit Sharma. But Butt observed that the right-hander matured and adjusted his game.
He went on to point out that KL Rahul has been in excellent white ball form since his departure from the testing side and that he has a century behind him in the warm-up game, despite beating in the middle order in that game. Not to forget, he reached a century on the 2018 tour in London.
“KL Rahul looks like a transformed cricketer. He has improved a lot and is now a more mature cricketer. He fought his demons and worked to expand his game. KL Rahul has definitely improved. As Sunil Gavaskar rightly pointed out, KL Rahul scored a hundred goals in the three-day game against County Select XI, ”Salman Butt said on his YouTube video.
“He also scored a hundred on the last Test of India’s previous tour in 2018. With all of these points in mind and looking at his current form, KL Rahul has to be the best person to get injured with Mayank Agarwal and Shubman Gill disfellowshipped. He did a great job in one day games. So it will be in the best position to open up (among the options available), ”he added.
KL Rahul has the self-confidence, he is the one who should open the eyelashes: Sunil Gavaskar
The legendary Indian opener and captain Sunil Gavaskar had previously said that Rahul should be the one to replace Agarwal. He said the 29-year-old is confident because of his sovereign form, be it in white ball or red ball cricket.
“KL Rahul scored a hundred in the warm-up game. I think he should be the person to open for India on the first test. Also, Rahul has the confidence on his back of a hundred, he’s the one who should make the headlines, ”Gavaskar was quoted as saying by ANI.