Former India cricketer and batting coach Sanjay Bangar weighed in on opener KL Rahul’s poor form in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 after the team lost their Group 2 encounter against South Africa on Sunday.

Speaking on Star Sports’ pre-match Cricket Live show ahead of the Australia vs Ireland on Monday, Bangar analysed the big mistake being made by Rahul, who has scores of 4, 9 and 9 at the top of the order so far in the tournament.

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“I think the one cardinal mistake that he’s making is that he’s playing the ball far too late. In this format of a game wherein you should be going more towards the ball, meeting the ball way in front of your front pad, I think he’s playing the ball far too late,” said Bangar.

“Even here (against South Africa) if you see he is guiding it into the hands of the fielder as if it is like at the start of the day you do these sorts of drills before the game. He would be disappointed with that shot because when you know that there is a fielder positioned in that first or second slip area you do not play it, or you rather play it harder, go really hard at the ball. So I was surprised by the kind of shot that he picked up on that particular delivery.”

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Former Australia all-rounder Shane Watson, also on the Star Sports show, shared his views on the impressive form of India middle-order batter Suryakumar Yadav.

Suryakumar was the standout batter for his team against South Africa and scored a valiant 40-ball 68 to revive the Indian innings.

“It was like he was batting on a different wicket to all the other Indian batters. Incredible to watch...68 off 40 balls with six fours and three sixes and it’s a big big round at Perth. Just his ability to use the pace, the length... and also the line. I loved how he’s getting inside the line enough to really just be able to help the ball with the pace and bounce from the South African pacers,” said Watson.

“He wasn’t fighting the pace and bounce of the pitch like some of the other Indian batters were. And for me his stature keeps growing and growing. Yes, we’ve seen him dominate in the IPL, for India in other conditions, but to be able to do that at the Perth Stadium against extremely fast quality bowling as well, it’s only going to build his confidence. To watch someone bat the way he does is an absolute treat.”