Ahmedabad, Feb 2 (IANS) After India opener Shubman Gill announced himself as an all-format player with his unbeaten 126 off 65 balls in the 168-run victory over New Zealand in the T20I series decider, skipper Hardik Pandya was full of praise for the young right-handed batter, saying his technique is so strong that he makes batting very easy for himself.
'He's technically so sound that it's (batting) very easy for him. It's just a switch he needs to do to play T20, ODI and Test cricket because he has the game for all three formats. So, to be honest, he's not someone who does not need to play behind the wicket because of the kind of shots he can play all around in front (of the wicket) with the kind of gaps there.'
'He's actually one of those batsmen along with Surya (Suryakumar Yadav) who can actually hit good balls and make them a bad ball,' said Pandya in the post-match press conference.
Gill's 126 not out, laced with 12 fours and seven sixes at a strike rate of 200, is also the highest score by an Indian in T20Is, eclipsing the previous best by Virat Kohli, who had smashed 122 not out against Afghanistan during the Asia Cup in the UAE in September 2022.
'Having said that, it's just tremendous seeing his growth and it has been very fruitful for me (as captain). He's a kid who has a right head on his shoulders and going forward I think he's going to be a great value and asset for the Indian cricket team. I wish the best to him, and I do want him to continue the great run, which he is having,' added Pandya.
Gill also became the fifth Indian batter to have scored a century in all three formats of the international game after Kohli, Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma and K.L. Rahul. Pandya signed off by saying it was not surprising for him to see the kind of knock played by Gill at Ahmedabad on Wednesday.
'I have always felt that he has got the technique and style to play all formats. To be honest, for me, it was not surprising. The time he has, the effortless batting he can do, I don't think a lot of people can do that.'
'So, for me, I knew this would happen and it's good to see doing this in this format as for him, it means a lot and as a youngster, if you can get success in all formats possible, it just adds more dimension to your game.'