Shubman Gill’s work ethics make him one of the best cricketers right now, said his teammate and Gujarat Titans allrounder Vijay Shankar, who hailed the opener’s ability to find gaps in the powerplay.
The India and Gujarat Titans opener has lit up the IPL with three centuries in four matches to confirm an ‘Orange Cap’ with 851 runs so far this season.
Gill struck the highest score of this IPL — 129 from 60 balls with 10 sixes and seven fours — as his sensational batting put Mumbai Indians under tremendous pressure chasing a target of 234.
Mumbai Indians were bowled out for 171 in 18.2 overs as Gujarat Titans set up a final clash with Chennai Super Kings on Sunday.
“He has amazing work ethics, that’s why he is one of the best cricketers right now,” Shankar said during the press-conference.
“He is hitting those sixes like he’s batting in Test cricket. The way he practices is something that’s important. Every practice session he goes out there and does what he wants, he practices with purpose. Everytime he turns up for a game, it’s so lovely to see him switch on from ball one.” Gill has joint second-highest sixes, 33, in this IPL and Shankar said the young opener is batting at his best at the moment.
“He is able to do both — hit sixes and find the gaps in the powerplay, which I think is his biggest strength. He can hit those sixes.
“There was an innings where he scored 90 (101 against SRH) and had just one six. He has the ability to do both and he knows when to use what, which is a highlight of a top cricketer,” Shankar said.
A total of 233 was a bit too high: Boucher
MI head coach Mark Boucher said allowing the Titans to get to a score of 233 for 3 was a bit too much for his side, and a string of injuries to key batters Ishan Kishan and Cameron Green unsettled his side.
Kishan ran into his teammate Chris Jordan in the first half of the game and injured his eye during the change in overs, and as a result, could not bat in Mumbai’s chase with Vishnu Vinod replacing him as a concussion sub for the remainder of the game.
“Look, 233 was a bit too high, I felt. Probably 25-30 runs a bit too much. It was a bit unsettling because we were unsure how Ishan would go,” Boucher said.
“Nehal, we knew that he could do the job opening the batting. In the practise games that we played, he opened the batting fairly aggressively which we really needed someone to go out and play tonight, it did not come off for us.
“In T20 cricket you got to adapt to conditions but today we were thrown a curveball, unsettled us a bit, we lost Nehal early and Greeny also unsettled us, got a blow to the arm and he came off. But thankfully he was able to go back out, bat fast and put us in a decent position up until the 15th over.
“Unfortunately we just lost too many wickets and that was our downfall from the batting perspective. If one of our batters was in there, batted right until the end, it might have been a lot closer than the end result.” The South African said despite losing two of their primary bowlers in Jasprit Bumrah and Jofra Archer, his side did their best to fight the fire.
“You can look at Bumrah not being available, Jofra not being available, they are quality players. If you are losing out on your quality players, yes it’s going to leave a hole,” Boucher said.
“I thought that the guys that we brought in, they did their best in a situation where they probably weren’t selected upfront. So they were brought into the competition maybe a little bit out of season for them. To lose two players like that, that was difficult but we gave our best and we weren’t good enough.” Boucher said it was a tough season for MI’s bowlers who conceded totals in excess of 200 four times in a row in the league round, but added that the batters did a great job in chasing down big targets successfully, especially at their homeground Wankhede Stadium.
“We’ve got quite an inexperienced bowling line-up. But we had some good chats and I think we improved as the competition went along. But to look at it just because we went over 200, we also chased a lot of scores over 200,” he said.
“I feel sorry for the bowlers at times, going for scores over 200 can dent your confidence a bit, which probably did to a couple of our bowlers. But we were chasing scores down of 200-plus. So you have to look at it in a different context.”
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