Shubman Gill’s perseverance paid off as he notched up his third Test century against England in Visakhapatnam. This century, achieved amidst early challenges and a stroke of luck, is expected to boost his confidence significantly.
Gill’s century came after facing 132 deliveries in the second innings of the 2nd India vs England Test in Vizag. The moment he completed his hundred was more than just a milestone; it represented a sense of relief and achievement for the young batsman. He visibly relaxed as he removed his helmet, raised his bat, and embraced his batting partner Axar Patel, possibly thanking his stars for the breakthrough.
Talking to Jiocinema after the end of the day’s play, he said that he did get out playing a loose shot.
Shubman Gill said, “my father would scold me for getting out that way, I’ll get to know once I reach the hotel.”
Facing James Anderson under overcast conditions, Gill’s task was daunting, especially considering his recent struggles with form. Having gone 12 innings without a fifty-plus score, questions were raised about his place in the team, particularly as he had taken over the No. 3 spot from Cheteshwar Pujara. Gill’s average of under 30 from 21 matches was underwhelming, with an average of 21 at No. 3 until his innings today. Despite getting starts, he had not been able to convert them into substantial scores.
Gill’s innings today was not without challenges. Early in his innings, he survived a close call when Tom Hartley nearly dismissed him for four. His short arm jab, usually successful in white-ball cricket, resulted in a streaky boundary. He also survived an lbw appeal that was reviewed and narrowly saved by a slight deflection off his bat. These early struggles seemed to indicate that luck was on his side.
Shubman Gill was sceptical about taking the review when he was given out. After a long chat with Shreyas Iyer, he finally took the review.
Gill said “Shreyas told me to take the review, I didn’t knew there was an edge”.
As the innings progressed, Gill capitalized on England’s inexperienced spinners, displaying a mix of aggression and elegance. He utilized the short ball to rock back and the full delivery to execute elegant drives. His fifty came off just 62 deliveries, showing his ability to accelerate after a cautious start.
Despite some nervy moments, Gill’s innings was marked by a sense of calmness and control. He capitalized on loose deliveries and rotated the strike effectively. His approach reflected a batsman regaining his form and confidence.
Gill eventually fell for 104 while attempting a reverse sweep, a dismissal that he might regret as he could have batted longer. Nonetheless, his century will be remembered as a gritty innings that showcased his talent and determination to succeed at the highest level.