KL Rahul Batting Analysis:

In this article we will be analyzing KL Rahul’s Batting.

Kannur Lokesh Rahul known as KL Rahul is an Indian international cricketer who plays for Karnataka and is the captain of Kings XI Punjab in the IPL. He is a right-handed batsman and a wicket-keeper.

KL Rahul is one of the most highly rated opening batsmen in India’s next generation. Rahul was a part of India’s squad in the 2010 Under-19 World Cup and made his first-class debut in the same year

He enjoyed a breakthrough 2013-14 season for Karnataka’s Ranji Trophy victory with 1033 runs, which included three centuries, three nineties, and a Man-of-the-Match performance in the final.

KL Rahul’s Batting Stats in Limited Overs Cricket:


MatchesInningsRunsHighest scoreAverageStrike Rate100’s50’s


MatchesInningsRunsHighest scoreAverageStrike Rate100’s50’s

From the above 2 tables we can clearly conclude by saying that Rahul is well suited to play in the limited-overs format as he averages 45+ in both the formats. He has an explosive strike rate of 146.10 in T20I which shows that he is a good hitter of the ball. He has totally hit 129 4s and 61 sixes in T20I itself. Which means that on an average he hits totally 5 boundaries per match.

KL Rahul IPL Analysis (2016-2019):

KL Rahul had a fantastic 2019 IPL season where he scored 593 runs in 14 matches, with an average of 60.75 which proves his consistency in the 2019 edition of the IPL. His highest score was in the same season where he scored a tremendous 100 of just 64 balls which included 6 fours and 6 sixes and was not out. Now let’s look into KL Rahul’s runs from 2016 to 2019.

KL Rahul Runs in IPL since 2016:

kl rahul ipl runs

In the above diagram you can see that Rahul’s runs for the year 2017 is missing. This is because he had sustained a shoulder injury and was ruled out of the entire 2017 season. In 2016 KL had not got many chances to bat in the top order and hence managed to score only 397 runs in 10 innings.

In 2018 he had got the opportunity to open the batting for the Kings XI Punjab and hence proved his worth by scoring 659 runs in 14 matches and was in 3rd place in the orange cap rankings. And again, in the 2019 season of IPL he had a fantastic season and scored 593 runs in 14 matches and was placed 2nd in the orange cap rankings.

KL Rahul runs batting position wise in IPL since 2016:

Batting Position NoRunsInningsAverageNot Outs
Number 112152460.754
Number 2121524.20
Number 4184661.33

From the above table we can see that Rahul bats at his best when he opens the Batting in the IPL. Having 4 not Outs in spite of opening the batting is extraordinary. This is because he makes full use of the batting power play by scoring as many boundaries he can which in return gives him confidence to score big.

Again, at number 4 he averages 60+, this is due to his 3 not outs as being not out will increase your average. He has only not scored runs batting number 2 as he only averages 24.2 with no not outs. So, batting number 1 would be Rahul’s ideal batting position.

The main reason why KL Rahul is very successful in opening the batting is because he makes really good use of the powerplay.

He tries to score as many boundaries as he can, so this helps him to settle and gain confidence. Once he has hit 3 boundaries right in the middle of the bat, he gets a lot of confidence from it and goes on to score big.

KL Rahul IPL 2018 Powerplay Analysis:

Not Outs10
Strike Rate157.58

The main reason why KL Rahul bats his best, when he opens the batting, is because of how he plays in the powerplay. He has an unbelievable average of 91 in the power play with 10 not outs and a strike rate of 157.58. His powerplay overs batting is the secret to his success as an opener.

KL Rahul was bought by the Kings XI Punjab for a whopping 11 crores and since then he has proved his worth in both the seasons, he had played for them.

He is also appointed as the captain for the Kings XI Punjab in the 2020 season of IPL. But sadly, the tournament has been suspended due to COVID-19.

KL Rahul Modes of dismissal in IPL since 2016:

kl rahul out

From the above pie chart, we can say that Rahul has mostly got out by giving a catch. He has got out 22 times by giving a catch which constitutes to 59% in the pie cart. And secondly, he has got bowled 5 times and stumped twice and got out LBW only once. He has remained not out 7 times which is 19% in the pie chart.

Since he has got out by giving catches the most let’s see to which positions, he has given the most catches to.

Fielding positions to which Rahul gave most catches to in IPL since 2016:

kl rahul catch

We can see that he mostly has given catches to Deep Mid-wicket and to the keeper. The main reason why he has given 4 catches to Deep Mid-wicket is because when he goes to play the pull shot, he badly misses times the ball and ends up giving a catch to Deep Mid-Wicket.

He has also given 4 catches to the keeper and 3 to covers and 3 to third man. Whenever he tries to loft the ball over covers for 4 he miss times and gives a catch straight to covers and he has also given 3 catches to third man this is because when he tries to flick the ball towards the leg side he badly judges the ball and ends up getting a leading edge to third man.

Type of Bowlers KL Rahul has got out to the most in IPL since 2016

We can see that Rahul has mostly got out to right arm pacers 12 times, followed by right-arm leg spinners 7 times. He has got out 12 times to right arm pacers mostly in the death overs where batsmen have to try to hit each and every ball. Hence that’s the reason why there are many wickets taken and many runs scored in the death overs. He finds leg spinners difficult as he fails to read the ball well. This is because he reads the spin-off the pitch rather than reading it when the bowler is just about to release the ball. This is the main reason why he has got out six times to off-spinners and 7 times to leg- spinners.

KL Rahul in ODI:

Back in 2016 Kl Rahul became the first Indian batsmen to score an ODI century on debut. He scored that century off just 46 balls. Let’s check out KL Rahul’s ODI stats


MatchesInningsRunsHighest scoreAverageStrike Rate100’s50’s

He has a healthy average of 47.65 and a decent strike rate as well. Now let’s check out KL Rahul’s performance analysis by batting position.

PositionInningsNot Out100s50sHighest scoreRunsAverageStrike Rate
6110011*11 366.6

As seen in the IPL analysis Rahul loves to open the innings. As you can see in the above table that he enjoys opening the batting in ODI with Rohit Sharma

Rahul averages 50.50 when he opens the innings, with a good strike rate of 81.53. This is because he makes full use of the batting power play by scoring as many boundaries he can which in return gives him confidence to score big.

Rahul hasn’t been successful in batting number 3 and 4 this is because he needs the powerplay to get going and he is not much of a guy who rotates singles. But then again at number 5 his strike rate of 118.7 proves that he is a pinch hitter.

KL Rahul’s favorite shot analysis:

One of Rahul’s favorite shot has to be the square-cut where he pierces the ball between point and covers. Below is an analysis of his square-cut frame by frame.

kl rahul cut

Frame 1: In the first frame we can see that he is getting ready and watching the ball closely. Since the ball is pitched short, he decides to not take a big stride and hence takes a short one.

Frame 2: In the second frame his eyes are right under the ball and he has a full concentration on the ball. He has decided that he is going to play the square cut and hence gets ready with his bat lift. We can also see that his balance is perfect which enables him to hit the ball as hard as he can.

Frame 3: In the third frame he has hit the ball right in the middle of the bat and directs the ball between cover and point for 4. Again, here his eyes are right under the ball this lets him have better control when he plays the shot.

Back foot punch: The other shot Rahul plays beautifully is the back-foot punch where he punches the ball of the back foot between Mid-off and cover. He usually plays this shot when the ball is new and comes on to the bat nicely. Below is a frame by frame analysis on his back-foot punch

kl rahul backfoot

Frame 1: He watches the ball closely and since the ball is pitched short on the middle stump he decides to go back and play the punch.

Frame 2: He goes back and waits for the ball to come on to the bat and doesn’t play the shot in a hurry. He waits for the ball to come on to the bat as the ball is new and hard. He makes sure he plays the shot right under his eyes as he would have good control on playing the shot.

Frame 3: He stands tall while playing the shot and perfectly times the ball for 4 between cover and mid-off and maintains his balance


The main weakness of Rahul is the bouncer at a good pace. He repeatedly gets out on facing bouncers that are targeting the body. In Sydney despite being set and batting on 108 he got out to Mitchell Starc where Starc bowled a bouncer at a good pace towards Rahul’s body and Rahul ended up missing timing the hook shot and gave a catch to the bowler.

Well this did not stop here, the same pattern of dismissal repeated itself in Sri Lanka as well as the West Indies. Rahul misjudged the pace of the ball and ended up giving a catch to the bowler.

KL Rahul in Tests:

KL Rahul is not as successful in tests as he is in ODI and T20. He was doing well in the test format from 2014 to 2017 but then in 2018 he suddenly experienced a downfall in his test career.

KL Rahul Test Stats:

MatchesInningsRunsHighestAverageNot Out50s100s

As you can see in the above table Rahul averages only 34.5 despite batting in 60 innings.

kl rahul test runs

In 2016 Rahul was at his best in tests with an average of 59.88 and his ball per dismissal was also quite high at 96.5. In 2017 his average dropped to 46.69 and balls per dismissal to 82.6. This shows that Rahul’s performance has been declining year after year.

In 2018 his average drastically decreases to just 23.44 and his balls per dismissal also decreases drastically to 39.16. The main reason for this is his increase in false shot %.

YearMatchesBalls playedFalse shotFalse shot%No of dismissals by false shots

In the above table you can see that Rahul’s false shot% has increased in 2018 and that’s the main reason for his downfall in test cricket in the year 2018 and was replaced by Mayank Agarwal and Hanuma Vihari.

Author-SreeRam Sreedharan

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