IPL2023: Shubman Gill ton helps GT seal spot in playoffs

GT's win meant that SRH became the second team after Delhi Capitals to be knocked out of the playoffs race

Shubman Gill has taken a special liking to Ahmedabad’s Narendra Modi Stadium. Before the start of IPL 2023, he had scored a hundred against Australia in the Test series at the Motera ground. In February, there was an unbeaten 63-ball 126 from his blade against New Zealand in a T20 international at the same venue.

On Monday, the Gujarat Titans opening batsman treated the Ahmedabad crowd to another display of classical strokeplay on the way to his maiden IPL hundred – 101 off 58 balls. It came on the heels of his equally classy 94*off 51 balls against Lucknow Super Giants at his IPL home turf.

Gill’s sublime innings helped GT win the contest by 34 runs and assure themselves of a top-two finish in the league. SRH became the second team after Delhi Capitals to be knocked out of the playoffs race.

The value of Gill’s runs can be seen from the fact that B Sai Sudharshan was the only other GT batter to get into double figures. The two shared a second wicket partnership of 147 in which Sudarshan’s contribution was 47 (36 balls). Joining forces after they lost their first wicket for zero, Gill totally dominated the stand by scoring 89 off 48 balls with 12 fours and a six.

Gill took apart the bowling attack with some deft touches. It was risk-free batting with a high strike rate of 174.13. The knock included just one six. The key to his success minimising the dot balls. He used the pull shot to good effect, hitting five of his 13 fours and the lone six to the midwicket region.

Late collapse

The home team will, however, not be happy with their display in the slog overs. They were 147/1 at the end of the 14th over. But the innings fell apart after pacer Marco Jansen broke the Gill-Sudarshan century stand by removing the latter.

Their big hitters – Hardik Pandya, David Miller and Rahul Tewatia – all fell in quick succession. Veteran Bhuvneshwar Kumar came back to bowl a brilliant final over where the GT lost four wickets and managed to add just two runs. The hosts didn’t have a single 10-plus over after the 12th of the innings.

SRH crash to defeat

Despite finishing strongly in bowling, SRH failed to capitalise on the momentum gained. They were clueless against the GT pace attack with Mohammed Shami, Yash Dayal and Mohit Sharma combining to reduce the visitors to a hopeless 49/6.

Ace pacer Shami ran through their top order with a three-wicket burst. SRH were 29/4 after 4.2 overs with Shami taking a wicket in each of his first three overs for figures of 3-0-17-3 at that stage. Mohit Sharma struck a double blow in his first over, the seventh of the innings to leave SRH reeling at 49 for six.

Heinrich Klassen led the rear-guard action for SRH with a half-century (64 off 44 balls).

Gill takes control

SRH opted to bowl after winning the toss but after an impressive first over by Bhuvneshwar, it went all downhill for them. Gill was in sublime touch from the first ball to help score 12, 15 and 18 runs in the next three to help GT reach 50 in four overs.

He first milked Bhuvneshwar, getting 10 runs off the first three balls he faced to throw the seasoned pacer off his length. The elegant opener smashed left-arm pacer Farooqi for four fours in the fourth over with a pull shot, flick, punch through cover and a glide to the fine leg.

Jansen did well to restrict GT to just five runs in the fifth over but the hosts picked up two more fours in the sixth over bowled by H Natarajan to finish the powerplay on 65/1 after six overs.

Skipper Aiden Markram's effort to try out spin against Gill with a more spread-out field after the powerplay period also didn’t work.

The beauty of the partnership was that there was a minimal display of power hitting. The first six of the innings came only after the 10-over mark, after 15 fours. Sai Sudharsan moved across to use the pace of Marco Jansen and scoop him over the fine leg.

Disclaimer: This Article is auto-generated from the HT news service