Indian batsman KL Rahul believes the pressure is on England to save the first Test after the visitors plundered a brilliant 95-run lead on Friday (August 6). The opener spoke about his team’s batting performance and said the onus is now on the Indian bowlers to once again deliver wickets and solidify their advantage.
KL Rahul was the top-scorer in India’s 278-run effort in the first innings. The right-hander notched a serene 84 in 214 deliveries, including 12 boundaries. Ravindra Jadeja (56 off 86) and Jasprit Bumrah (28 off 34) also played a major role in the late flourish on the rain-affected day.
“Yes, obviously, the first innings lead is very important for us. After bowling so well and dismissing them for 180, as batters, our role was to cover the target and then [we knew] whatever runs we score above that will be good for our team, will be cushion for our bowlers and will put us ahead of the game,” said KL Rahul.
“But having said that, in Test cricket and England, things keep changing every hour, it’s important to bowl with the same discipline tomorrow as we did in the first innings and challenge their batsmen. This 90-95 runs lead is good to have and the pressure is back on the opposition now to commit and make those runs,” KL Rahul said in the post-match press conference.
England’s batsmen were also solid in their reply to India’s target. Openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley were watchful as ever and strung a circumspect 25-run partnership before the final session was washed out.
Passed time by watching Olympics and Hundred: KL Rahul
KL Rahul also spoke about how the players kept themselves occupied during the innumerable breaks. He said the players watched the Tokyo 2020 Olympics or England’s domestic 100-ball tournament The Hundred while waiting for the umpires’ decisions on the game.
“No conversations like that, you just put your pads out and sit in, wait for the umpires to come and tell when the game’s going to restart. Just dressing room chatter, watching the Olympics or The Hundred on TV, and just waiting for the time to go back,” KL Rahul said in reply to IPL 2021’s query in the press conference.
The weather forecast for Day 4 isn’t great either, but play is expected to begin at the same time as usual – 3:30 PM IST.