KL Rahul played an outstanding knock and once again proved why he is a valuable asset for Team India in limited-overs cricket during the 1st ODI against New Zealand at the Seddon Park in Hamilton on Wednesday. Rahul once again had to make an adjustment this time around as well as he came out to bat at number five after youngsters Mayank Agarwal and Prithvi Shaw opened the innings. However, that did not bother him as he played a stellar cameo to take India to a huge total.
KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer were involved in a 136-run stand for the fourth wicket stand but both batsmen looked solid out in the middle as they took the Kiwi bowlers to the cleaners. But, it was Rahul's elegant switch-hit for six which stood out the most. This had happened on the final ball of the penultimate over which was bowled by Jimmy Neesham
The all-rounder had bowled a fuller delivery outside off stump as Rahul played the reverse shot with ease and the ball travelled the distance. By the virtue of this maximum, Neesham ended up giving away 14 runs in that over. The image of this elegant shot was also posted on social media.
The Indian batsmen showed a ruthless intent after being asked to bat first by New Zealand skipper Tom Latham. Young openers Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal added 50 runs for the opening wicket. Even though the duo were dismissed in quick succession, skipper Virat Kohli added impetus to the Indian innings with a very good half-century. After Kohli's dismissal, the onus was on KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer. Iyer went on register his maiden ODI ton.
He was dismissed for 103. Nonetheless, Rahul and Kedar Jadhav hit some big shots at the backend of the innings as India finished their innings at 347/4. The Karnataka batsman remained unbeaten on a 64-ball 88 at a strike rate of 137.50 which included three boundaries and six maximums.
(Image Courtesy: @ICC)