Punjab Kings skipper KL Rahul lavished praise on batsman Shahrukh Khan for finishing the game against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in their Indian Premier League (IPL) encounter here at the Dubai International Stadium on Friday. Rahul smashed a gutsy fifty while Sharukh slammed 22 off 9 balls as Punjab Kings defeated KKR by five wickets.
“Shahrukh worked really well with the batting coaches, asking a lot of questions, and developed a game where he can play at 170-180 without taking many risks. We know he can hit the ball a long way. He has done that for Tamil Nadu. Not to worry about results,” said Rahul during the post-match presentation.
Punjab Kings needed 24 runs in the last three overs and Rahul and Shahrukh Khan helped the side register a win over KKR despite a wobble in the last over.
The Eoin Morgan-led side had come back into the game but Rahul’s calm and composed knock helped Punjab Kings to walk away with two points.
“We are used to this, but I’ll take the two points. We played brilliantly and smartly. We realised it was a decent wicket. There wasn’t much spin. The bowlers felt we can make the batsmen sideways… Really happy that we could get over the line. Obviously, I would want to finish games,” said Rahul.
Further speaking about Harpreet Brar’s exclusion from playing XI, Rahul said, “These are things that kill me as a captain – leaving out young Indian boys. Chris has left the bubble, so we had to make a few changes to see what would be our best XI. But we go to Sharjah for next game, and we’ll see.”
Punjab Kings have 10 points from 12 games and Rahul doesn’t want to put pressure on the players for the remaining matches.
“Often times, we have put pressure on ourselves. Everybody knows we are a far better team. Putting pressure on ourselves is not helping. These four games in the UAE have been a perfect example. It is a good learning for a young team like us,” Rahul signed off.