Owing to his technique and application, Kannanur Lokesh Rahul has, for long, been labelled as one of the highly-rated opening batsmen in India's next generation of cricketers. A tall, elegant right-hander who can also keep wickets if required, Rahul, for a better part of his career, has checked all the boxes across formats.
But, when the Karnataka cricketer isn't seen playing his majestic cover drives or cutting a sorry figure for the opposition bowlers with his clean hitting, Rahul has looked absolutely ridiculous on his long walks back to the pavilion - something that has happened more often in the ongoing Test series between India and Australia than the Indian opener or his fans would've liked.
Despite a series of inconsistent performances (barring his 149 against England at The Oval) in the longest format, the right-handed batsman was backed by the Indian selectors and team management ahead of regular opener Shikhar Dhawan - who'd be happily twirling his moustache at his Melbourne home - to come good Down Under. But, until now, everyone's been waiting for Rahul, one that we all fell in love with, to arrive in Australia.
The 26-year-old was dismissed for just 2 runs in the first innings at the Adelaide Oval. But, while the critics began circling around him like sharks all over a dead whale, Rahul fend them off with a crucial 44-run knock in the second innings as India romped to a 31-run win. Though he still didn't score a fifty, Rahul's innings had many convinced that his dismal run in the format was probably coming to an end as India geared up to extend their lead going into the 2nd Test. But, it wasn't meant to be.
Quickly turning into a bunny for Josh Hazlewood, Rahul, once again, fell prey to the Australian seamer in the first innings at Perth. He was clean bowled by Hazlewood at, yet another, disappointing score of 2 runs. And, then, in the second innings, Rahul did well not to give bragging rights to Hazlewood for the second consecutive Test, but he couldn't stop Mitchell Starc from shattering his stumps before opening his account.
KL Rahul: My job is to see off the new ball.
New Ball: My job is to see off KL Rahul.
If Rahul's disappointing scores weren't enough, the fact that he couldn't decide whether to leave Starc's delivery or play it before it got an inside edge and crashed onto the stumps, further summed up his current form. In the process, Rahul also claimed an unwanted record, one that he's not going to forget soon.
Following his dismissal for a duck in the second innings, Rahul has now been bowled seven times in his last 11 Test innings. He has equalled Sunil Gavaskar with the most number of dismissals as 'bowled' in both innings of a Test. While Gavaskar was bowled in both the innings of a single Test on three occasions in 125 matches, Rahul has achieved the infamous feat in only 33 Tests.
Thus, there was no surprise to see the Indian cricket fans taking to the social media to express their disappointment at Rahul's dismal run.December 17, 2018 December 17, 2018 December 17, 2018
still a better opener than kl rahul pic.twitter.com/PAeoDfZ8l4— ðð (@nalove_da) December 17, 2018 December 17, 2018
KL Rahul has all it takes to enjoy a long run in the Indian team.
âï¸ Hipster hairdo
âï¸ Hipster beard
âï¸ Social media savviness
âï¸ Selfies with Kohli
âï¸ Workouts with Kohli
Explains KL Rahul's current run of form. pic.twitter.com/JDV4V9wWJt— Akshay (@Akshay7_) December 17, 2018
Indian fans waiting for Kl Rahul to tweet or post ð¤£ pic.twitter.com/ww81ScpTcb— AayusHð®ð³ (@Cricketician_) December 17, 2018 December 15, 2018
Absolutely criminal to keep KL Rahul in the playing 11. Not only he failed himself but also the country in numerous occasions. If we loose Ravi Shastri and Virat Kohli should be held responsible #INDvAUS— AngryRavi (@ravikiran248) December 15, 2018 December 17, 2018 December 17, 2018 December 15, 2018