‘It is something I’m enjoying a lot’: Rahul reveals ‘key’ to his recent success in Tests; ranks SA ton ‘right up there’

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Team India batter KL Rahul produced a stellar performance in the opening Test against South Africa in Centurion, scoring a hundred in the first innings which proved key to India’s victory in the game. Rahul registered scores of 123 & 23 across the two innings and was named the player of the match as India secured a comprehensive 113-run victory.

At the start of the year, Rahul was not a consistent part of Team India’s Test XI but a stellar show in England — where he ended as India’s second-highest run-getter – not only cemented his place in the side but also led to his ascension as India’s interim Test vice-captain for the South Africa tour.

In the Centurion Test, Rahul left a lot of deliveries as he kept his patience and discipline and the batter revealed that it is the ‘key’ to his recent success in the longest format of the game.

“It is something that I am enjoying doing a lot at the moment. That’s the key to Test cricket as you need to enjoy leaving balls outside the off-stump,” said the Indian opener.

“I know we play a lot of one day and T20 cricket, smashing the ball all over the park is exciting and thrilling at same time, but when you come to Test cricket, learn to be disciplined, learn to play the waiting game.” 

He also understands that repetition could be boring but that’s a sure-shot recipe for success.

“Mistakes happen when you get bored of doing the same thing. I enjoyed playing defensive shots, tiring the bowlers this year since I started playing Test matches again in England,” said Rahul, reiterating that even defending could be beautiful.

So where does this century rank among his six overseas hundreds?

“Right up there in terms of conditions and wicket how challenging it was, I think this innings would be right up there for me. It took a lot of guts and determination and discipline to get a century and get my team to a winning position. So yeah, it’s right up there,” he was frank in his assessment.

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