KL Rahul likely to leave Punjab Kings: Report
KL Rahul is likely to part ways with Punjab Kings before the 2022 Indian Premier League season. As per a report in Cricbuzz, quite a few franchises have approached the star opener recently. Rahul, who joined the Punjab-based franchise in 2018, became their leading run-scorer this season (2,548). He is also the highest run-scorer of the ongoing IPL season so far.
Punjab finished sixth in the IPL 2021
Punjab were inconsistent in the 2021 season. They lost several matches while being in the winning position. In the match against Rajasthan Royals, they failed to score four runs in the final over. Punjab finished sixth with six wins in 14 matches. Notwithstanding, Rahul still has the Orange Cap, having amassed 626 runs at an astonishing average of 62.60.
Rahul was bought by Punjab Kings in 2018
Rahul was bought by Punjab Kings for Rs. 11 crore in 2018. He smashed the fastest fifty (14 balls) in the IPL history in Punjab's very first match that year (vs Delhi Capitals). The record remains unbroken till date. Although Punjab failed to reach the playoffs, Rahul had the third-most runs. He scored 659 runs from 14 matches at an incredible average of 54.91.
Rahul was appointed Punjab's captain in 2020
Punjab had a similar run in 2019, having missed the playoffs berth. Rahul yet again did well with the bat, scoring in excess of 500 runs. He racked up 593 runs from 14 matches at an average of 53.91. Punjab appointed Rahul as captain in the 2020 season after R Ashwin's exit. However, Punjab still couldn't make a turnaround.
Highest score by an Indian in the IPL
Rahul was the highest run-scorer of the 2020 IPL edition (670 runs at 55.83). He smashed an unbeaten 132 (69) against Royal Challengers Bangalore, his second century in the IPL. He registered the highest score by an Indian in the IPL.
Rahul will attract hefty bids in the auction
If Rahul leaves the Punjab-based franchise, he will attract some hefty bids in the impending mega auction. He could get back to Royal Challengers Bangalore, the franchise he started his IPL career with. Considering Rahul's incumbent stature, RCB skipper Virat Kohli might be eager to get him back. Notably, Rahul has also represented Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL.