Hamilton, Nov 27: The second one-day international between India and New Zealand might have been abandoned but young India batter Shubman Gill received a lot of plaudits for his positive batting effort. The right-handed batter from Punjab showed great control and timed the ball nicely in his unbeaten knock of 45 off 42 balls. His innings could be split into two halves i.e. before and after rain interruption.
Gill - who slammed a fifty in the previous game - showed positive intent with the bat and scored at a brisk pace against the new ball in the first powerplay. The talented right-handed batter never looked to muscle the ball, instead, he was timing it at ease. By the time skies opened up when India's score was 22 for no loss in 4.5 overs, Gill had contributed 19* off 21 balls. He had played some brilliant cuts and hit some glorious pulls.
Once the play resumed after the rainy spell, the Punjab cricketer had to apply himself and settle himself down again. He negotiated the swing brilliantly and went on to construct another fine knock. He pulled Matt Henry for a maximum over deep midwicket and later punched Michael Bracewell towards deep extra cover for a glorious boundary.
Speaking exclusively to Prime Video, former India Head Coach Ravi Shastri praised the 22-year-old for his knock for his impeccable timing and control. Shastri said, "His emphasis today was on the timing of the ball. Sometimes when you are out of your depth, you want to get on with it by trying to hit the ball hard. He was in good control with good footwork. It is great to watch him play. There is something regal about him. He is a quality player and he's going to be around for a long time (perhaps a decade). He has good work ethics, he trains hard, he's hungry and he loves this game. He will continue to play because his grooming is good, he is always grounded".
Former India woman cricketer Anjum Chopra also lavished praise upon Gill for his exceptional growth in white ball cricket. The cricketer-turned-commentator lauded the Gujarat Titans' opener for working diligently on his strike rate as well.
Speaking exclusively to Prime Video Chopra said, "Shubhman's strike rate has improved in international cricket. He is averaging a healthy 70 plus in international cricket so, you are looking at a player who is developing. I was listening to Ajit Agarkar earlier on the show and he said, 'we have quality here and while Suryakumar Yadav was going the way he does, but let's not forget Gill because he has found how he wants to play in international cricket. In T20s, probably I can now understand why the Indian team doesn't want to give him an opportunity right now. Let him become a more traditional player of ODIs and Test match level as well but T20I is a game he is very close to. This style of play that he has shown on the first one day international and then the second one day international, both have been very calm and composed yet impactful.
"So, the initial part of the game for about four and a half overs, he was timing the ball down the ground, those cuts came through as well but the moment it went to a shortened version, we could actually see that he was trying to hit the ball into the gap lot harder than he was trying to time it. That was the only thing missing but it's that urgency that creeps into a batter's mind that how you want to score those runs. So, yes, I don't think Shubman Gill should be spoken less about because he is a class player."
The third and final ODI of the three-match series will be played on November 30 and one can watch the tournament on Prime Video.