Sydney: Indian batting coach Sanjay Bangar feels KL Rahul should play responsibly being an experienced player of the side.
While five different Indian batsmen notched up their respective half-centuries against Cricket Australia XI in the warm-up game here on Thursday, Rahul failed to make a significant contribution after falling for just three runs.
“He (Rahul) is not a young player anymore and he is on his second tour here. He has played 30 Tests and he has a responsibility. We expect him to play with that responsibility and play his role for the team,” Bangar told reporters here.
“He (Rahul) has been looking in good shape, including today. It is just that he is finding new ways to get out. Even today, the ball was quite afar when he played it away from his body and lost his wicket. But what we are reading he is playing the ball well and he is one hit away (from form),” the batting coach expressed.
“We know his ability and if he converts that to performances then it is important for the team.”
The 46-year-old also said that the opening combination and as the number six slot for the first Test in Adelaide are still up for grabs and the team management will take a call on it after the second innings of the ongoing game.
“I would say there are still some spots to be taken. We will keep a close eye on how the second innings goes and it gives some other batsmen a hit especially Murali Vijay and middle order batsmen, and see how they go,” said Bangar.
“There are certain spots to be taken still. We are looking at the opening slot as well as the number six slot. Those are the positions we are still looking at, we have not decided yet,” he added.
Praising youngster Prithvi Shaw (66 runs off 69 deliveries), who slammed a half-century, on Thursday, the batting coach said: “He has made a mark straightaway in whichever format he has played limited overs or first-class cricket, Irani Trophy, Ranji Trophy, Duleep Trophy or India A. He has shown he can adapt to the conditions and to the stage as well.”
“He plays with a lot of clarity and the impressive thing about him is that he gets into good positions with a clarity of mind and fearlessness of youth that helps him quite a bit,” Bangar pointed out.