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India’s new batting sensation KL Rahul annnounced his comeback from injury in style as he smashed 76 off only 85 balls as Karnataka scored 345 for six against Rajasthan in a group B Ranji Trophy encounter.
With veteran Gautam Gambhir looking horribly out of sync with his flawed technique against seam bowling, the Indian team management is desperate to get Rahul back in the fold as he was playing brilliantly before a hamstring injury during the Kanpur Test against New Zealand.
With Anil Kumble setting a protocol that one Ranji Trophy match being must to test the match fitness, Rahul passed the batting test in flying colours as he hit 15 fours and a six in his 85 balls. He scored 66 runs in boundaries in 16 scoring strokes.
He was severe on both Pankaj Singh and Deepak Chahar hitting some flowing drives off both front and backfoot.
Rahul was finally out nicking one off left-arm seamer Tanvir Mantesar ul Haq to Chetan Bist.
Rahul and opener Ravikumar Samarth (62) added 111 runs in 24.3 overs.
It was for Rahul that Mayank Agarwal batted at No 4 as the selectors need to keep a tab on his fitness more than the runs that he would be scoring.
Agarwal, who otherwise opens, came in at No 4 to score 81 off 127 balls with 12 boundaries.
Stuart Binny (37) and CM Gautham (35) were set before getting dismissed.
Brief Scores: Karnataka 345/6 (KL Rahul 76, Mayank Agarwal 81, Tanvir Mantesar ul Haq 3/64) vs Rajasthan.