KL Rahul was honest about India’s regret at being ousted from the Asia Cup at the Super Fours round. He said that India’s victory against Afghanistan was a plus, but that the team still has a lot to learn moving forward. He then went on to discuss his own recovery from injuries and how he’s been feeling as of late.
Even though Thursday’s match against Afghanistan was a meaningless “dead rubber” due to India’s elimination from the competition, the Indian team turned forth their finest performance of the Asia Cup at the Dubai International Stadium. Despite this, the win by 101 runs was highlighted by some spectacular individual performances that speak well for the future of the squad. While Virat Kohli’s 71st international century after nearly three years was without a doubt the highlight of their performance as they etched a mammoth score of 212, Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s five-wicket haul to restrict Afghanistan to 111/8 was without a doubt the icing on the cake.
A little more than a month remains before the World Twenty20, and before the Men in Blue fly to Australia to compete in the main event, they are only slated to play a total of six Twenty20 Internationals at home. After having an unsuccessful departure from the group stages of the World T20 2021, India will be eager to absorb as much as they can learn from their performance in the Asia Cup and use it when they play on the biggest platform.
“There are positives to take out, and we’ve really been challenged. Time to sit back and reflect on where we need to improve, but it’s happened at a really good time – obviously don’t want to lose – but we can take away a lot of lessons. The result has been disappointing. We came into the tournament wanting to play the final and the groove of winning big tournaments,” stand-in skipper KL Rahul was quoted as saying by ESPN Cricinfo in the post-match presentation.
The match against Afghanistan was important for Rahul on a personal level as well, as it was the first time he had scored a fifty after coming back from a lengthy injury layoff a month earlier. His score of 62 came off of 41 balls and was filled with six fours and two sixes. It also contained some great strokes from the 30-year-old that were reminiscent of him when he was at the pinnacle of his ability.
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