Shubman Gill Must Keep Going Having Just Scored A Test Ton v England
There are two ways, if not more, to analyse Shubman Gill’s Test career the way it stands at the moment. The critics, especially those who do not waste much time before engaging in career bashing may not be too enthusiastic in noting that despite playing 22 Tests, all that Gill has managed as on date, are 1201 runs.
Surely, doing the basic math that won’t require one to engage in any strenuous exercise such as calculus would reveal that despite featuring in no more than 41 Test innings, which means having a go at bowlers on forty one occasions, Gill has an average of 31. And that is a bit disappointing.
Having said that, it is not something that should allow one to write him off just yet. Remember, he is all of 24 and still very much, a work in progress especially at the Test match level.
But the other, perhaps more rational way of viewing his Test career, one that isn’t riddled by angry adjectives and accounts for the thing call patience, should suggest that here is a batsman who until very recently was found struggling at the five-day level. And yet, it is the very same batsman who still found a way to score a hundred against England despite battling pressure and even calls to be let off from the Test side.
In the most recent Test match played at Vizag, it was Shubman Gill’s contribution too that led India on course to a way win on the fourth day itself.
Shubman Gill, the usually sublime batsman had been keeping quiet
Blocking the harsh deliveries and countering pace and spin, especially the in-from Tom Hartley, Shubman Gill showed a lot of heart on way to his 104, which as it turned out, became his maiden Test century against England.
But the real significance of Gill’s century could be ascertained by the fact that he reached a prominent score after having struggled for three back-to-back series’.
Runs didn’t come from his bat when he played the prestigious World Test Championship Final, wherein the tall right hander managed just 31, including a best score of 18.
Next up, Gill was found struggling in the Two-Tests played in the Caribbean, where despite facing a team not so mighty as the West Indies, talking of contemporary cricket, Gill managed just 45 runs from the bat. On that tour, he had three innings to get some runs but couldn’t get any.
The rancour of critics who had been witnessed his lack of runs for a while reached peak crescendo when Shubman Gill failed even against South Africa in the two Tests, which was his next assignment. He’d score no more than 74 runs from 4 innings, which included a best score of 36 and that was that.
After having found a way to reach the pavilion not long after he had walked down the middle in the three innings played recently against England, something, it ought to be noted, must have struck Shubman Gill.
Surely, cementing one’s place in the annals of the Indian national team, regardless of what format one plays, can have its hard days. It’s one thing to break into the national side, but something quite other to be a recurring feature of that unit.
But with his courageous 104, which was a timely knock that perhaps did salvage some pride, Shubman Gill is back at scoring runs. His class and caliber is beyond doubt having scored a mountain in white-ball one day cricket last year: 1584 one day runs from 29 innings, including a whopping 208 against the Kiwis.
Though, the 104, a first ton in India against England must only push him to do even better. With so many names waiting for their moment, Gill must not stop himself from scoring more and getting another valuable score.
In a team environment that is desperately missing Virat Kohli, this is the least that the classy batsman with gorgeous strokes on the off side, could do. Remember, there is no Rishabh Pant either.