The poor form of KL Rahul hasn’t just become a headache for the Indian cricket team but also some former cricketers. The likes of Venkatesh Prasad and Aakash Chopra have been standing at extreme ends of the debate, with the former asking for the opening batter to be axed from the team, while the latter siding with the team management’s decision. Prasad and Chopra even locked horns on Twitter over the subject. Going a step forward, Aakash Chopra posted a detailed video on his YouTube channel, ridiculing Prasad’s criticism.
“He (Prasad) didn’t even write about Shubman’s home numbers. Because you are showing averages, he has played 11 innings at home in which his average is 26.3. I am saying that you shouldn’t judge Shubman Gill with averages. He is a damn good player. He is a better player than that but use the same yardstick for the others.
“He has shown 14 overseas innings in which he has an average of 37, in which he has conveniently not spoken about SENA countries. If we see only SENA, his numbers will also not be that good. His away numbers are looking good because of Bangladesh,” Chopra said in a video.
Prasad highlighted a few names while doing KL Rahul’s statistical comparisons with some other players on Twitter. The former India pacer had picked the likes of Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, Shubman Gill, and Ajinkya Rahane as players who have certain records that are better than Rahul.
Shikhar Dhawan has the best overseas average amongst recent openers. Avg of nearly 40 with 5 100’s. Though he too hasn’t been consistent in Test but had Outstanding centuries in SL and NZ, plus a much better home record. pic.twitter.com/rH94R0a3A0
— Venkatesh Prasad (@venkateshprasad) February 20, 2023
However, Chopra asserted that Prasad has cherry-picked stats he wanted to highlight while ignoring a few other stats which don’t paint as pleasant a picture as he wanted to.
“He has spoken about Shikhar Dhawan’s best overseas average – that he has an average of 39. He conveniently missed the SENA countries. If we talk about SENA countries, Shikhar Dhawan’s average is 26. He scored a century in New Zealand but other than that, he doesn’t have a century in any SENA country.”
“He asked us not to see Mayank Agarwal’s overseas average, which is actually 25. Mayank Agarwal is very close to my heart. If we leave aside Mayank’s form over the last three months, he hasn’t scored runs in the last two years, not even in first-class cricket,” Chopra said, firing shots at Prasad’s criticism.
“When you see those numbers, you will say that Mayank is probably not in the opening slot’s race at the moment. No one is talking about him. Getting Mayank’s name in this debate didn’t make sense,” he added.
Towards the end of the video, Chopra even urged Prasad to stay calm and not peddle ‘agendas’ if there are any or highlight stats that suit his thoughts.
“I am not saying KL Rahul will become like Rohit Sharma but I humbly request you to stay calm. If there are any agendas, let’s not peddle them. Let’s talk about the numbers that are actually there and not those that suit your thoughts,” he stressed.
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