Young India opening batsman Shubman Gill provided the Virat Kohli-led side with an outstanding start against New Zealand at the ICC World Test Championship (WTC) Final. Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson asked the Indian batsmen to post runs on the board after he won the toss on Day 2 of the WTC Final in Southampton.
Gill, alongside his senior partner Rohit Sharma, was able to tackle the opposition’s lethal pace attack for the initial few overs. However, the duo was dismissed at the scores of 28 and 34 runs respectively just before Lunch was taken. Blackcaps pacers Neil Wagner and Kyle Jamieson claimed the respective wickets of both the Indian openers.
Former India batting coach and current commentator Sanjay Bangar explained how the Indian opening batsmen, especially Gill disturbed the lengths of New Zealand bowlers. He mentioned that both the batsmen were proactive in their approach in the English conditions.
“It looked good for India purely because of the way both the batters applied themselves. They were proactive in their approach. They were reactive. They were not wanting to hang back and see how things went. They were standing outside the crease,” Bangar said while speaking to Star Sports.
Indian openers forced NZ to try different things
The 48-year-old pointed out that both the batsmen were standing outside the crease to tackle the swinging conditions while Gill was regularly walking towards the bowlers. Bangar added that this forced the opposition to try out different field placements at times.
“At times, they were walking towards the bowlers, which was done by Shubman Gill on a regular basis. Just to disturb the lengths of the New Zealand bowler. I felt that they succeeded in that because they disturbed the lengths, New Zealand had to try out different field placements at times, which normally they would not have done.
“If India had stuck to a traditional approach, but India were proactive and hence they got the upper hand in the first hour,” he signed off.
Team India finished the play of Day 2 at 146/3 with captain Virat Kohli (44*) and vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane (29*) currently batting well at the crease.