New Delhi [India], August 17 (ANI): Former Indian opener Wasim Jaffer opines that star batter KL Rahul should open the batting during the Zimbabwe series as he is coming back after a long time to the national side and requires game time.
India's first ODI of three-match series against Zimbabwe will be played on Thursday in Harare.
"I think KL should open in the Zimbabwe series, he's coming off a long layoff and needs game time. #ZIMvIND," tweeted Jaffer.
KL Rahul played his last white-ball game for India in February 2022 against West Indies at home, in which he scored 49 runs. It was an ODI game.
Following this, he represented Lucknow Super Giants in the Indian Premier League (IPL). He represented the side in 15 games, and scored 616 runs at an average of 51.33. Rahul scored two tons and four half-centuries in the tournament. His best individual score was 103*.
However, he spent more than two months after that battling injury and COVID-19. Due to this, he was not able to play the home T20I series against South Africa, the fifth and final Test against England at Edgbaston in July and three ODIs and T20Is after that and could not tour West Indies either.
KL's statistics as an opener in ODIs help in justifying Jaffer's opinion. Out of 41 innings of his ODI career, Rahul has played 21 innings as an opener. In these, he has scored 884 runs (out of career total of 1,634 runs) at a healthy average of 46.52. He has scored three centuries and six half-centuries as an opener. His best individual performance as an opener is 111.
India's tour of Zimbabwe will start on August 18 and go on till August 22. It will consist of three ODIs.
India squad for 3 ODIs: KL Rahul (captain) Shikhar Dhawan (vice-captain), Ruturaj Gaikwad, Shubman Gill, Deepak Hooda, Rahul Tripathi, Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Shahbaz Ahmed, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Axar Patel, Avesh Khan, Prasidh Krishna, Mohd Siraj and Deepak Chahar. (ANI)