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"You shouldn't ask the question at all now about which young batter should be the opener" - Irfan Pathan lauds Shubman Gill's double century

Shubman Gill was competing with Ishan Kishan for the opener
Shubman Gill was competing with Ishan Kishan for the opener's spot. [P/C: BCCI]

Irfan Pathan believes Shubman Gill's double century in the first ODI between India and New Zealand has put the debate surrounding Rohit Sharma's opening partner in 50-over cricket to bed.

Gill smashed 208 runs off 149 balls as the Men in Blue set a massive 350-run target for Tom Latham and Co. in Hyderabad on Wednesday, January 18. Their bowlers then bowled out the visitors for 337 to eke out a narrow 12-run win.

During a discussion on Star Sports, Pathan opined that Shubman Gill has sealed his place as India's opener in ODI cricket, saying:

"You shouldn't ask the question at all now about which young batter should be the opener. You (Gill) have answered that question entirely and you have sealed the opening slot with your performance."

The former Indian all-rounder reckons the Punjab opener had made the spot his own even if he hadn't converted Wednesday's century into a double ton, stating:

"Even if he had not scored a double century, he had done that with the century he scored today. It was his second consecutive century and converted that to a double century as well."
200 reasons to cheer! πŸ‘ πŸ‘Shubman Gill joins a very special list πŸ‘Œ πŸ‘ŒFollow the match πŸ‘‰ bit.ly/INDvNZ-2023-1S… #TeamIndia | #INDvNZ | @ShubmanGill https://t.co/xsZ5viz8fk

Gill played a 116-run knock in the final ODI of the recent series against Sri Lanka. The 23-year-old became the youngest player to score a double century in ODI cricket with his 208-run effort.


"They used to play for the same team at the Gujarat Titans" - Irfan Pathan on Shubman Gill's assault on Lockie Ferguson

Shubman Gill smoked Lockie Ferguson for three consecutive sixes. [P/C: BCCI]
Shubman Gill smoked Lockie Ferguson for three consecutive sixes. [P/C: BCCI]

Pathan praised Gill for showing his proficiency against both spin and pace, and especially for taking Lockie Ferguson to the cleaners, elaborating:

"How well Shubman Gill batted, played spin very well, used his feet very well and hit shots against the fast bowling straight down the ground after waiting for the ball, we saw all that. The three consecutive sixes he hit against Lockie Ferguson, they used to play for the same team at the Gujarat Titans."

The cricketer-turned-commentator concluded by stating that Gill displayed as much lazy elegance as Rohit, observing:

"He knew that he shouldn't bowl that line and length but did that and he had to pay for that, but we are not complaining at all. His batting is enjoyable to watch. We say that Rohit Sharma has time when he bats. We have found another young batter, seeing whom we feel is not going to get scared against fast bowling, he has a lot of time."
1⃣ Frame3️⃣ ODI Double centurions Expect a lot of fun, banter & insights when captain @ImRo45, @ishankishan51 & @ShubmanGill bond over the microphone 🎀 πŸ˜€ - By @ameyatilakFull interview πŸŽ₯ πŸ”½ #TeamIndia | #INDvNZ bit.ly/3Hc8gJ9 https://t.co/GHupnOMJax

Gill struck 19 fours and nine sixes during his innings. Six of those maximums came in the last three overs of India's innings, including three off the first three balls of the 49th over bowled by Ferguson.

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Edited by Sai Krishna
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