Shubman Gill passed the number three test with a gutsy hundred on Sunday, repaying the immense faith the Indian team management showed in him. After scoring 104 out of India’s second innings total of 255 against England on the third day of the second Test, Gill was a pleased man. It was his first 50-plus score in 13 innings and the first substantial knock after deciding to move down a place in the batting order. “It was very important and very satisfying for me to be able to score runs at number three. It felt pretty good, especially in the situation given when we lost Yashasvi and Rohit, as they were really good at giving us good starts at the top of the order.”
“I think it was important for us to get a big lead and to be able to get as many runs as possible,” said Gill, who survived two close DRS calls early in his innings before gaining confidence.
Ever since his U-19 days, Gill has been rated highly and last year he came of age with a stellar white ball season. However, the success in the traditional format eluded him over the past six months.
Gill knows that the team has high expectations from him and perhaps that is why his celebrations post the landmark were rather subdued. He did not last long after reaching the milestone, falling to a reverse sweep.
“It felt good. I just thought the job was not done for the team. So, that’s why it was a little mellowed celebration,” he said.
Talking about his struggles early on when James Anderson was making the ball talk, he said: “I was just taking one ball at a time and obviously, there was a lot happening around the crease. A couple of wickets fell early and then me and Shreyas had a good partnership.”
Gill was guilty of using hard hands in the series opener and even reached out to a fairly wide ball in the first innings here to get out. He put in the hard yards in the nets ahead of the second Test and that seemed to have worked for him.
“I think it’s very important to stay true to who you are and how you have gotten there. Sometimes if you get over-defensive or over-aggressive or try to play or try to be someone that you are not, then you are prolonging those innings.
“Then you’re sometimes not able to get out of that shell that was my thing going into this Test that I’m going to play how I’ve played my cricket throughout,” Gill shared his thoughts on dealing with the lean phase.
‘Not easy to score runs here’
Gill felt England will find it tough to chase down a record 399 on day four. He was also asked about England chasing a mammoth 378 against India rather comfortably in Edgbaston in 2022.
“As the game goes on, it will have variable bounce as we saw today. It is not turning as much as the other pitches but it is definitely doing something. It is not easy to score runs here.
“England are never out of the game. I think this is a different kind of wicket than what we played at Edgbaston.
Having said that, the morning session will be very important for us as we have seen there is always a bit of moisture coming at the start of the day. That will be the key for us,” said Gill.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a press release)
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