Legendary opening batsman Sunil Gavaskar has called KL Rahul the ‘next big thing’ in Indian cricket after his lively display during India’s eight-wicket win over England in the first T20 at Manchester.

Rahul struck an unbeaten 54-ball 101 to blow the hosts away and Gavaskar applauding the batsman.

“Then came a mini-masterpiece from someone who is going to be the next big thing in Indian cricket. From the days of his debut when he straightened up against Mitchell Johnson on the last tour of Australia, KL Rahul has been a class apart.

The ease with which he tore into the English bowling was spell-bounding and even had the Indian skipper clapping,” the legend wrote about Rahul’s innings.

The 68-year-old was full of praise for both Kuldeep and Rahul after the 1st T20I in Manchester, who compared the Chinaman’s struggle of English batsman as “puppets on a string”.

Also Read: England played Kuldeep really well- Virat Kohli

While KL Rahul’s remarkable consistency in recent times has surprised many, his childhood coach Jairaj Muthu is certainly not of them. Having seen Rahul since his early days, Muthu is well aware of his trainee’s batting abilities as he revealed the batting star’s craze for batting.

“Rahul loves to bat. It’s in his heart. He spends more than six hours per day in the nets. He is very determined. Batting means everything to him,” said Jairaj.

“Even when he is sleeping, if someone wakes him up at any time and tells him to bat, he will,” says Muthu.

Muthu further told that facing constant injuries made Rahul introspect.

“International cricket is all about how well are you able to handle pressure and Rahul did a lot of mental preparation while recovering from his injuries. Injuries gave him ample time to think,” the coach said.

He also said that the star player is ready for all formats now.

“From IPL onwards, he has improved in his game. He is also the best reverse sweep player, but he isn’t playing that shot. He moves into the line of the ball and doesn’t play away from the body,” he said.