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‘Kohli inspires, Rohit impresses’

Updated on: 17 November,2023 07:45 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Subodh Mayure |

Opener Shubman Gill admires Virat’s hunger for runs and hails Sharma for confidently grabbing the early initiative

‘Kohli inspires, Rohit impresses’

India’s Virat Kohli en route his 117 against New Zealand at Wankhede on Wednesday; (right) Shubman Gill. Pics/Satej Shinde

Shubman Gill emerged India’s highest run-getter, at the U-19 World Cup triumph at Mount Maunganui, New Zealand in 2018 scoring 372 runs. Now, he aspires to earn the same glory at the senior level as he opens the innings with skipper Rohit Sharma and also often shares the crease with Virat Kohli, who comes in at No. 3.

Kohli is leading the run charts at this World Cup with 711 from 10 games, while Gill, who was struck by dengue at the start of the tournament, has scored 350 runs in eight games.

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On Wednesday, Gill, 24, scored a 66-ball unbeaten 80 in India’s 70-run win over New Zealand in the semi-final at the Wankhede Stadium. Kohli’s hunger for runs is his inspiration. “Every time he [Kohli] comes on to the park, he does something special. His consistent ability to do it for the past 10-15 years is what is really inspiring,” Gill said during the post-match press conference.

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‘We complement each other’

The lanky batsman retired hurt after sharing a 93-run second wicket, unbeaten partnership with Kohli, who scored his 50th ODI century (117). He felt his batting approach is a lot similar to that of Kohli. “Honestly, we just talk about the situation and how we want to play. Our game is a little similar in style because he and I both like to keep [the scoreboard] running. I’m also a little busy, running singles, twos and hitting boundaries in between. We complement each other quite well, so it works out well in the middle.”

Watching and learning

Speaking of his opening partner Rohit, Gill said that he simply enjoys sitting back and watching the skipper take centrestage. “Everything about him [Rohit] really impresses me. I stand as a learner in the Powerplay. He plays 10 overs, I play 15-20 balls. I rest and Rohit comes and does his thing. He scores a four here, a six there and I just watch,” said Gill, who shared a 71-run opening stand with Rohit of which the skipper contributed 47 off 29 balls, while Gill scored 21 in as many balls in the stand.

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