Bengaluru, April 9: KL Rahul on Sunday (April 8) hammered the fastest fifty in the IPL history (50 off 14 balls) while leading Kings XI Punjab's chase of 167 against Delhi Daredevils at Mohali.
Rahul placed West Indian Chris Gayle - his teammate in Kings XI and Royal Challengers Bangalore - as his motivational factor after that whirlwind knock.
In fact, Rahul was unaware of his feat and realized it only when Yuvraj Singh, told him: "I was worried for a bit that you were going to break my record (12-ball 50)."
Turning his focus back to the time with Gayle, Rahul said: "I was in that zone which every batsman wants to be in. I was hitting the ball sweetly. So I just didn't want to overthink. I was just waiting for the ball to leave the bowler's hand and then react," Rahul said.
"I have realized over the years playing with Gayle and I have spoken to him over the last couple of years about how to pace the innings and he always keep telling about getting into good positions and then body reacts. That's all I was trying to do and I'm really happy that it came off today. Thanks Chris," he said,
Gayle lauded Rahul. "It was fantastic! Was it your plan to execute from the first over? You put the bowlers on the back-foot in the first over and then the momentum was actually with you and then you got to be very explosive and it was very good to see," said Gayle.
Now, Kings XI head to Benglauru for an away match on Friday and it will be a special match for both Rahul and Gayle - both played for RCB in the past, the latter as recently as in the last edition.
"We have entertained people around the country over the years and going back home feels good ... feels a bit emotional to be playing against RCB. But at the end of the day it is a game, we want to go there and play our best cricket and hopefully end up on the winning side again," said Rahul.
Gayle too sounded a warning. "So, Bangalore we are coming for you, Okay! RCB, we are coming, beware! KL Rahul - and he did entertain us today and he is going do so many more times," said Gayle.