'He is in great form and I hope he continues' - Rohit's chuckling WTC reference on Shubman Gill
Even in his capacity as Mumbai Indians (MI) skipper, Rohit Sharma would've somewhere deep down enjoyed the spectacular knock his Indian team opening partner and Gujarat Titans (GT) top-order blazer Shubman Gill played against his team in the IPL 2023 Qualifier 2 on Friday (May 26) night.
The prodigious young batting talent lit-up the scenes in front of a packed Ahmedabad crowd with his scintillating hundred versus the five-time champions. The 23-year-old right-hander struck an eye-catching 129 off 60 deliveries to take the Titans to an impregnable 233/3 in 20 overs.
It was Shubman Gill's third century of the season for the defending champions, one under the pressure of which, the MI batting line-up got crushed and the franchise stood eliminated after making only 171 in response. In the process, Gill took his tournament tally to a jaw-dropping 851 in 16 innings at a strike-rate of 156.43.
Rohit would've been at pains with MI's sad exit from the competition after seemingly peaking as a side towards the business end. But the experienced head was also mindful of the larger picture for Indian cricket and took heart from the fact that Gill is showing tremendous form only ten days shy of the marquee World Test Championship (WTC) final in England.
Rohit's amusing WTC remarks on Shubman Gill
Before the clash with Australia at The Oval from June 7, for which Rohit will be departing in the next couple of days, he made it a point to insist Shubman Gill's incredible run and overall sync of his game augurs well for the Indian team's chances against their longstanding arch-rivals.
Speaking at the post-match presentation in IPL 2023 after MI's painstaking loss, the Indian captain took an amusing WTC reference to suggest he wasn't too displeased watching Gill bat in the manner he did against his MI troops.
"All the bowling teams have been challenged this season, looking at what happened in the previous game, we had a great performance. Got to give credit to Shubman, he is in great form and I hope he continues that," said Rohit before breaking into a chuckle.
Gill, who had entered the IPL 2023 after a terrific century in his most recent Test innings at the fag end of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in March, would be hoping to quickly adjust to the conditions in England post his Titans duties and help India lift another coveted trophy versus their famed Test match rivals.