KL Rahul Centuries

image-lld4vr6gKL Rahul has scored 14 international centuries for India [Source: Twitter]

One of the most talented batters in Indian cricket, Kannaur Lokesh Rahul, fondly known as KL Rahul, has craved his own niche. Rahul, who started as a batter, has donned the hat of a finisher, opener, floater, and wicket-keeper over the years, signifying his importance as an all-round cricket, more than just a gifted batter. 

With an aggressive approach towards batsmanship, Rahul is the third Indian player to record centuries across all three formats and is known for his excellent conversion rate.

For any cricketer, in particular, a batter, scoring centuries is the pinnacle, which only adds to the confidence that helps the player succeed under any given condition and format. Demand from a batter in cricket is - runs and is achieved if the batter dishes out hundreds, which asks questions about technique, temperament, skill, and importantly the hunger in the middle to accomplish greatness for the team. 

Exploring KL Rahul's Remarkable Achievements

image-lldq66wiKL Rahul in action [Source: Twitter]

Rahul started his Test career with a bang, slamming his maiden Test ton in his second red-ball game for India in 2015 at Sydney. Having scored runs in Tests, Rahul became the first Indian batter to register a hundred on ODI debut, further cementing his position with the side. Not one to stop, the Mangalore-born gained success in T20Is as well, becoming the third Indian batter to hit centuries across all formats for India.  

In just under nine-odd years, the 31-year-old has notched up 14 international hundred, despite being away from the side for a few years, which only showcases the batter's ability to score big runs effortlessly.

Break down his centuries across different formats: Tests, ODIs, and T20s

In 47 Tests, the wicket-keeper batter has slammed seven centuries and 13 fifties, amassing 2,642 runs. The Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) captain's white-ball numbers are also impressive, with five and two tons in 54 ODIs, and 72 T20Is, respectively stockpiling over 4,251 runs combined. 

Also a prolific scorer in the Indian Premier League (IPL), the former Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) batter has struck four centuries and 33 half-centuries in 118 matches, accumulating 4,163 runs.  The Karnataka player has also slammed two T20 hundred in domestic cricket. 


Dominating the T20I Scene

image-lldqpx32KL Rahul has two T20I centuries for India [Source: Twittter]

In only his fourth T20I for India, Rahul created history, becoming the third batter from the country to score a hundred across all formats.

Rahul struck an unbeaten 110* against West Indies, laced with 12 fours and five sixes, exhibiting the hitting prowess the stylish batter possesses. Since then, Rahul has constantly been the backbone of India's T20I side and scored runs at a healthy average of 37, where his strike rate has been left desired by many.

Of late Rahul's batting has been criticised for not hitting runs off the mark and taking the match deep, which has often caused his team more harm than success. As an opener, Rahul's play against incoming delivery is also being exploited, with the batters foot-work being shabby during the first few overs, resulting in putting pressure on the side.

Rahul's second T20I hundred came in emphatic fashion against England in 2018. The former RCB batter blitzed to a 54-ball 101*, helping India chase down a stiff 160-run target without any concerns. 

T20I Centuries

110*West IndiesFlorida24 Aug 2016
101*EnglandManchester3 Jul 2018

KL Rahul's IPL Glory

image-lldqq6o7KL Rahul has four IPL centuries [Source: Twitter]

Rahul truly made a mark for himself in IPL 2016 for RCB after moving back and forth in the first three seasons between franchises. Rahul dismantled opposition bowlers with ease and showcased excellent hand-and-eye coordination, which became his main attribute. 

After missing the 2017 edition, Rahul moved to Punjab Kings (PBKS) in 2018 and immediately made his intentions clear smacking a 14-ball 50 in the tournament opener for his side. Rahul's maiden IPL ton came in 2019 against MI, having scored three consecutive 90+ scores in 2018, and since then has added three more to his tally.

Moving base from Punjab to Lucknow proved fruitful as Rahul scored as many as two hundred in the 2022 edition, which includes a century in his 100th IPL match. 

100*Mumbai IndiansMumbai10 Apr 2019
132*Royal Challengers BangaloreDubai26 Sept 2020
103*Mumbai Indians
16 Apr 2022
103*Mumbai IndiansMumbai 24 Apr 2022

Notable Centuries

  • 132* vs RCB - Asked to bat first, Rahul wreaked havoc on his former IPL franchise and propelled away to his second IPL century. Rahul scored 132* off 69 balls, which had 14 fours and seven towering sixes.
  • 103* vs MI - Playing a momentous 100th IPL match, KL classed his way to a historic hundred at Braborne, against his favourite side Mumbai Indians. The right-handed dashed struck a belligerent 103* off 60 balls, included nine fours and five sixes. 

Mastering the ODI Format

image-lldq7mw8KL Rahul has seven ODI centuries [Source: Twitter]

Rahul made instant noise in ODI cricket, registering a century on debut for India, which no batter had done, against Zimbabwe in 2016. However, with a jammed top order, Rahul found few little chances in ODIs, until the Cricket World Cup 2019, where he moved to the top order.

Rahul's ODI found a new flight as an opener with more freedom, coupled with more time in the middle. The exquisite stroke-maker continued to impress as a middle-order batter as well, all while donning the wicket-keeping responsibilities. 

Rahul's ability to adapt to any condition or situation makes him a scary prospect for the opposition, who are generally caught off-guard. As a floater, Rahul has to adapt more often than not and play as per the demands of the team, which highlights his understanding and mindset in ODIs, despite knowing how to score quick runs. 

He showed his batting prowess in the World Cup 2023, batting at number 5. KL Rahul scored 452 runs, which included a match-winning 97* against Australia.

100*ZimbabweHarare11 Jan 2016
111Sri LankaLeeds6 Jul 2019
West IndiesVizag18 Dec 2019
112New ZealandMount Maunganui11 Feb 2020
108EnglandPune26 March 2021
111* PakistanR Premadasa10 Sep 2023
102NetherlandsChinnaswamy Stadium12 Nov 2023

Noteable ODI Centuries

  • 100* vs Zim - Riding high on an impressive IPL 2016, Rahul got called up for India's Zimbabwe tour, with BCCI opting to rest several big names. With India chasing 169, the opener flourished as an opener and singlehandedly swept the Zimbabwean bowlers off their perch. Rahul scored a magnificent 100 off 155 with seven fours and one solitary six. 
  • 111 vs SL - After missing out on hundreds despite getting starts, Rahul, playing his first ODI world cup in 2019, scored off his superiority against Sri Lanka at Leeds. With Rohit Sharma rampaged on one end, Rahul breezed to his maiden World Cup century as India chased down 265 with ease. Playing as an opener, Rahul slammed 111 off 118, with one six and 11 fours. 
  • 112 vs New Zealand - Still adjusting as a middle-order batter, Rahul demonstrated a royal-like knock against New Zealand at Mount Maunganui. With India in trouble, Rahul played a sheet anchor role and marshaled the side past troubled water to a respectable 296. Rahul's knock included nine fours and two sixes. 

Test Match Excellence

image-lldqmz5mKL Rahul celebrates century at Lord's [Source: Twitter]

Having suffered a failure on his Test debut, Rahul displayed grit and dedication in his second Test to register his maiden red-ball century in 2015 against the mighty Australia at Sydney.

Rahul took his exceptional form into 2016 as well scoring a ton against West Indies in tough conditions, and then notching up a glorious 199 against England in Chennai.  With India's chopping and churning between various openers, Rahul maintained his place in XI till 2018, before a string of low scores saw the LCG skipper get dropped in 2019.

As several others failed and front-runners unavailable due to injuries, Rahul received a Test comeback in 2021 and shone on India's tour of England, scoring runs against his nemesis the 'Dukes' ball.   

The batter's last Test ton came in South Africa in 2021, under challenging conditions at Centurion, helping India secure a memorable win. 

From being a exuberant batter in white-ball cricket, Rahul has evolved into a more mature and compact player in the red-ball format over the years, understanding his role as an opener, which is to provide the trustworthy foundation for others, and then also breakdown opposition bowlers, which is quite evident in the former RCB's centuries since 2019. 
110AustraliaMelbourne6 Jan 2015
108Sri LankaColombo20 August 2015
101West IndiesKingston30 Jul 2016
199EnglandChennai16 Dec 2016
149EnglandLondon7 Sept 2018
129EnglandLondon12 August 2021
123South AfricaCenturion26 Dec 2021
113South AfricaCenturion27 Dec 2023

Notable Test Centuries

  • 110 vs Aus - Facing Australia Down Under is never easy, and with a deficit of 500-odd runs, it is even more daunting. Rahul, in just his second Test, displayed character and sublime strokeplay against spinners, finding the most minimalist of space to score runs. The opener scored 110 off 256 balls, with 13 fours and one six, to help India past 200-run mark. 
  • 199 vs England- On a flat Chepauk track, Rahul milked England bowlers for plenty, after making some technical changes from his earlier knocks. Rahul changed his stance, which witnessed him score without much risk on the off-side. The batter particularly hammered spinners for plenty during his 311-ball marathin stay in the middle. Rahul, unfortunately, perished on 199, becoming the second Indian batter to fall on such a score. 
  • 129 vs England - Rahul fought his demons in his second England tour and overcame the Dukes ball with a fine 129-run knock at Lord's. Rahul batted throughout Day 1 and became an ambassador of patience and determination. Unfazed by the moving ball, Rahul played with soft hands, and maneuvered the loose ball for runs, while respecting the untouchable ones. 

Incredible Feat: Third- Fastest T20I Century For India

image-lldry9wlKL Rahul smashed a 46-ball T20I for India [Source: Twitter]

Rahul made an instant impact in T20I cricket and carried his IPL form into his second-ever T20I series. In the first T20I against West Indies in the USA, Rahul etched his name in the record books, slamming the then second-fastest 20-overs ton in merely 46 balls. 

The 31-year-old came into bat with India in a deep ditch and pictured a devastating knock while chasing 246. The quite technically-apt Rahul showcased an array of shots both conventional and unconventional shots, during his stormy knock of 110*, which included 12 fours and five sixes. 

Rahul narrowly missed out on scoring the fastest-ever T20I ton during that time,  was on 94 off 43, before the batter missed two balls and failed to score any run. Richard Levi held the record for the fastest T20I ton in 45-balls, before David Miller broke it in 2017 (35 balls).

Having seen Johnson Charles toy around with Indian bowlers in the first innings, Rahul knew that the track did not help the bowlers much, and needed only a few balls to set in.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: How many centuries has KL Rahul scored across all formats?

A: KL Rahul has scored a total of 20 centuries across various formats (Test, T20I, ODI and IPL).

Q: Which format has seen the most number of centuries from KL Rahul?

A: KL Rahul has excelled in Tests and ODIs - having scored 7 centuries each.

Q: Has KL Rahul scored centuries in international Test matches?

A: Yes, KL Rahul has displayed his prowess in Test matches, registering 7 centuries.

Q: What is the significance of KL Rahul's fastest century?

A: KL Rahul's fastest century showcases his exceptional batting and quick-thinking, that signifies a remarkable feat in his career.