Dubai [UAE], September 25 (ANI): Kings XI Punjab skipper KL Rahul has said that having Anil Kumble as their head coach makes a "huge difference" not just for youngsters but for experienced players as well.
"Somebody like Anil Kumble comes in with so much experience. He has captained a franchise, he has been a part of teams and he has been involved with the league for so many years. He understands exactly what the team goes through and what the players go through during these two months of IPL. He has been through it himself. He is now in a coaching job, it helps the team, and it helps a captain like me who is captaining the team for the first time to have his experience and someone like him to fall back on to bounce some ideas." Rahul said during a conversation on InsideSport's 'Amstrad Face 2 Face Cricket Series'.
"Furthermore, we come from the same city and he has watched me grow, it's a huge help. He has been someone who has supported me and supported all the players from Karnataka. Just to have him around makes a huge difference for youngsters and for the guys who have been playing for a while because there is so much to learn from him," he added.
Punjab has so far played two matches in this year's Indian Premier League (IPL) and witnessed a defeat and win in the first and second match respectively.
The Rahul-led side lost against Delhi Capitals in a Super Over but made a scintillating comeback in the league with a massive 97-run win against Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) on Thursday.
Rahul played an unbeaten knock of 132 runs of 69 balls as he helped his side post a huge target of 207 for RCB. With this knock, Rahul also achieved the highest individual score by an Indian player in the IPL. Ravi Bishnoi and Murugan Ashwin then took three wickets each in the match as they bundled out RCB for 109 runs.
Rahul is playing competitive cricket after a long hiatus as the coronavirus pandemic took a huge toll on sports across the globe. IPL, initially slated to begin in March, commenced on September 19 in the UAE.
The skipper admitted that initially it was fine but after the first month, things started getting a "little difficult" during the coronavirus-forced break.
"There is no way we can forget about the sport. This is what most of us have done throughout our lives and there hasn't been a plan B. I have missed playing cricket a lot; initially, it was fine to get some rest. The first month and a half were relaxing but after that, it started getting a little difficult. As sportspersons, we learn to adapt and make most of the situation and that is more or less what we all did," he said.
KXIP will now take on Rajasthan Royals on September 27. (ANI)