Chris Gayle is all praise for his fellow-Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) opener KL Rahul. Speaking to Rahul after KXIP's victory against Chennai Super Kings (CSK) in Mohali on May 5, Chris Gayle said Rahul was one the best opening batsmen that he has come across. CSK batted first and registered a score of 170, after which KXIP chased the target of 171 with two overs to spare, on the back of a match-winning knock by KL Rahul, who scored 71 off 36 balls, with a strike rate of 197.22.
"You're one of the best opening partners I've had," Gayle told Rahul in a chat after the match. "Our communication between the wickets' was fantastic."
Gayle has tipped him for big things for Indian cricket in the future.
"You saw me as a 21-year old boy in the RCB (Royal Challengers Bangalore)," Rahul responded. "I've learned so much from him (Gayle) as an opening batsman, and I remember still, from then to now, he's not said anything different, is always about holding your shape, and that's been so important for any batsman. I've learned so much from him, and we've enjoyed playing together."
KL Rahul has scored 593 runs in 14 games, striking at 135.38 with an average of 135.38. His best score was an unbeaten century against Mumbai Indians (MI) on April 10.
Chris Gayle has scored 490 runs in 13 games in this edition of the IPL, averaging 40.83 with a strike rate of 153.6, his best score being 99 not out against RCB on April 13.
KL Rahul, as of now, is the second highest run-scorer in IPL 2019, behind SunRisers Hyderabad's David Warner, who has 692 runs. Chris Gayle is 5th in the list of the most runs scored in this year's IPL.
Chris Gayle and KL Rahul have been the openers for KXIP throughout IPL 2019. They have had two 100-run partnerships in IPL 2019, the first being 116 against the Mumbai Indians on April 10, and the second being 108 against CSK on May 5.