25-Year-Old Batsman India
July 24, 2017 Lokesh Rahul News
RotoWire Fantasy Analysis
Rahul was ruled out of India's first Test against Sri Lanka with viral fever, ESPN Cric Info reports.
Rahul looked ready to return to the Test squad, having just recovered from a shoulder injury that sidelined him for four months. However, after playing in the tune-up, he has been held out "as a precautionary measure," by the BCCI medical team. With Murali Vijay also out, India will need a new opening pair for the first Test while Rahul will look to return for the second Test at Colombo.
Lokesh Rahul: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Fantasy AnalysisPlaying his first competitive match in four months, Rahul looked steady with the bat, but is still nervous about how his body will hold up over the course of a Test match. While his international career has been relatively brief, he has four centuries and seven half-centuries in 17 Test matches. Beyond that, before being sidelined with his shoulder injury, while playing through it, he had six half-centuries in seven innings against Australia.
Fantasy AnalysisThe talented opener hasn't played since injuring his shoulder against Australia during their March Test series; however, he's been steadily progressing and looks to be on track to play against Sri Lanka. Despite injuring his shoulder at some point during the series, Rahul was absolutely sensational against Australia, racking up half-centuries in each of his last five innings of the series and finished the series with half-centuries in six of the seven innings he batted in.
Fantasy AnalysisRahul sustained the injury in the first Test against Australia but played through the entire series anyway and became the third-highest scorer from both sides with 399 runs in the four-match series. The 24-year-old will undergo surgery in London to correct the problem, according to sources within Royal Challengers Bangalore. Rahul's absence leaves RCB without their regular keeper, but coach Daniel Vettori said, "His absence will be definitely felt by the team, but both Kedar Jadhav and AB de Villiers are accomplished wicketkeepers, and we would look at one of them to take up the charge."
Fantasy AnalysisIn a series where good scores have been hard to come by, India's opening batsman has been the model of consistency. He racked up his third half-century in four innings this series. The 24-year-old struggled against Bangladesh at the batsman-friendly Hyderabad wicket, but seemed to find his form at the turning pitches over the first two matches. Rahul will look to keep his strong form going in the final two Tests of the series on what look to be more batsmen-friendly wickets.
Fantasy AnalysisRahul on his home ground, was the only India batsman to pass 30 on a day that was dominated by Australia offspinner Nathan Lyon. The 24-year-old set the tone for his innings from ball one, striking a boundary through point. He survived a life on 61 when his paddle sweep was dropped by David Warner at leg-slip. The opener's innings came to an end in a soft fashion after he hit a ball for the second time during his follow-through and lobbed and easy catch to mid-off.
Fantasy AnalysisWith only three Indian players to make it to double figures, Rahul pulled his side through to a score of 105 by making 64 runs himself. The opening batsman eventually fell to spinner Steve O'Keefe in the 33rd over along with two fellow teammates as O'Keefe picked up three in an over.
Fantasy AnalysisRahul shared a 30-run opening with India captain Virat Kohli before the latter was dismissed for 21. Later Rahul partnered with Manish Pandey for a 56-run fourth-wicket stand of which the former contributed 36. The 24-year-old batsman smashed six boundaries and two sixes during his match-high 71. Rahul brought up his half-century off 32 balls.
Fantasy AnalysisRahul started day 3 on 30 and propelled himself within one run on a maiden double-ton. The 24-year-old opener's new high score came from 311 balls and included 16 boundaries and three sixes. Rahul shared a century opening stand with Parthiv Patel before the latter was dismissed for 71 runs, then went through two other partners before combining with Karun Nair for 161 runs for the fourth wicket. England's Adil Rashid was the man to dismiss Rahul, who hit a loopy catch to Jos Buttler at extra cover.
Fantasy AnalysisMatching the efforts of Evin Lewis in the West Indies innings, Rahul took the Indian side within inches of victory with an equally as impressive knock. His 115 not out came from only 51 deliveries and included 12 fours and five that cleared the fence. It was however not quite enough as India’s captain MS Dhoni was dismissed off the last ball of the game to give the West Indies a one run victory.
Fantasy AnalysisThe 24-year-old wasn't included in the first Test squad, but has shown his mettle with the bat whenever he's been given an opportunity. As the opening batsman, he nearly outscored the entire West Indies side, posting his third century in just 11 Test innings, and was a force to be reckoned with in their limited-over series against Zimbabwe, opening the first ODI with a unbeaten century. His score of 158 was his high score in a Test, but with his trajectory, that doesn't look like it will last long.
Fantasy AnalysisAfter 196 runs in his first ODI series against Zimbabwe including going 63 not out and 100 not out, Rahul really disappointed in his first T20I innings. The golden duck was taken when Donald Tiripano bowled him out off stump. Rahul will look to bounce-back in the next two matches of the series on Monday and Wednesday.
Fantasy AnalysisFor the third time in as many ODIs in this series, Rahul played a prominent role in chasing down meager first-innings marks from the hosts. His fielding aided India's cause, as he scooped up a thick edge from Hamilton Masakadza in the sixth and dove for another from Richmond Mutumbami in the 35th. These catches were sandwiched about Rahul's toss to MS Dhoni in the 34th to complete a run out of Malcolm Waller. With 123 to pursue, Rahul and Faiz Fazal were tasked with making inroads but instead handled the task alone. Striking two sixes and four fours, Rahul contributed the larger portion of the stand that surpassed Zimbabwe's total within 22 overs.
Fantasy AnalysisAfter replacing Chris Gayle as opener for a large portion of the tournament, Rahul has been bumped to the middle order in successive games. The move didn't have a negative impact on Rahul, who put together a steady 68 off 53 on Wednesday against the Indians, but the forces known as Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers combined for a T20-record partnership of 229 on Saturday. The outbursts ensured that Rahul's bat remained quiet for the first time since April 17.
Fantasy AnalysisDespite Chris Gayle returning from paternity leave, Rahul remained in the playing XI, at least for one more match. In the first innings, Rahul held onto a nick from Kane Williamson, ending the Kiwi's day with exactly 50 on the ledger. After busting the bails for the run out of Deepak Hooda at the end of Hyderabad's time with the bat, Rahul channeled his domestic cricket success for the second consecutive game, regularly touching up the boundary from his opening position. Losing Virat Kohli in the sixth didn't deter Rahul from keeping up the pace, and upon his own edge to keeper Naman Ojha to conclude the 10th, Rahul's one six and six fours had fueled yet another half century.
Fantasy AnalysisVirat Kohli's search for a consistent partner quickly shuffled through Shane Watson and AB de Villiers, leaving the Royal Challengers sitting on 59 with two balls remaining in the eighth over. From that point onward, though, Rahul answered the call, finding Gujarat's offerings to his liking. Augmenting Kohli's bombardment of the boundaries with three sixes and four fours of his own, Rahul recorded the first 50 of his IPL career. Rahul's opportunities to pitch in could dry up once Chris Gayle returns to the team following the birth of his child.
Fantasy AnalysisWith Vijay unavailable for the first of three Tests, captain Virat Kohli will trot out Rahul and Shikhar Dhawan to open India's time in the crease. The 23-year-old Rahul has only two Tests under his belt, and aside from hammering 110 off 262 against Australia in Sydney in January, he's managed just 20 combined runs in the other three innings. If his track record in first-class cricket is any indication -- he's posted a 57.01 average and 54.75 strike rate in 59 innings -- he could be a formidable batsman at the top of India's order.
Fantasy AnalysisEntering in a precarious spot -- 23/3 through 5.3 -- Rahul found modest success compared to his teammates, of whom only three surpassed his 104.16 strike rate. Predictably, Rahul's three partnerships combined for 28 runs in 6.4 overs, meaning he performed the majority of the heavy lifting. The performance was a reflection of his season, which resulted in a final average of 28.40 with a 112.69 strike rate.
Fantasy AnalysisIn pursuit of 166, David Warner and Shikhar Dhawan cruised to 82 through the first 47 balls, and after Kane Williamson's two overs with the bat, Rahul entered to uphold what the openers started. Rahul passed the strike with Dhawan with regularity, while hitting a four and six on back-to-back deliveries to achieve Hyderabad's first win of the tournament. After the unbeaten outing, the 22-year-old Dhawan has bumped up his IPL average to 21.36 with a 108.79 strike rate across 12 innings.