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IPL: KL Rahul is a phenomenal white ball batter, says Lucknow's mentor Gautam Gambhir

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India]: Former Indian cricketer and the team mentor of the Indian Premier League's new Lucknow franchise, Gautam Gambhir, has said that KL Rahul is a phenomenal white ball batter and a leader as well.

Lucknow has opted to go with KL Rahul (Rs 17 crore), Marcus Stoinis (Rs 9.2 crore), and Ravi Bishnoi (Rs 4 crore) for IPL 2022. KL Rahul will don the captaincy hat. Andy Flower has already been named the coach of the Lucknow franchise while former India batter Gautam Gambhir will serve as the mentor of the franchise. Gautam Gambhir opened up about choosing KL Rahul, Marcus Stoinis, and Ravi Bishnoi for the showpiece event. "It's a no brainer when it comes to KL Rahul. He is not only a batter but obviously a leader as well. It is a work in progress but he gives you three things- keeps wickets, he opens the batting and he is a phenomenal white ball batter. His consistency and run scoring in the last couple of years has been phenomenal when he played for Punjab and other franchises plus at the same time he gives you three things so what better than this," Gambhir said on Star Sports show 'IPL Selection day'.

"Marcus Stoinis, purely from a finisher point of view because we were not 100 per cent sure whether Ben Stokes is going to be in the auction or not. So there were not too many quality all-rounders plus Marcus can bat in the middle order and probably can finish off the games as well. Ravi Bishnoi for me is one of the most exciting prospects at the moment and plus he was uncapped, he is young and he is only going to get better and at the moment we have seen what kind of skills he brings on the table because he is a complete wicket-taking option and you got someone like that an Indian that also is uncapped, who can get us wickets what better than that. So I feel that these three signings are very very exciting especially Ravi Bishnoi," he added.

Speaking about the team's philosophy for the upcoming IPL 2022, Gambhir said: "I think the team needs to develop not just the individuals, it's the team that wins you the tournament, not the individuals and most importantly I have always believed when you talk about team spirit, the bonding between the players, it comes with giving value to all the contributions because there will always be players who will have more opportunity to score more runs and take more wickets but the small contributions that will win you games as well."

"Big contributions only make headlines, it's the small contributions that win you game. I think best camaraderie is when everyone is made to feel important and that is what is going to win you tournaments," he added.

IPL's two new teams -- Sanjiv Goenka RPSG Group for the Lucknow franchise and CVC Capital's Ahmedabad team had received formal clearance from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). The formal clearance was given after a meeting of the IPL Governing Council. (ANI)

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