Gill has battled an inconsistent run of form in T20Is as he scored just 3, 7 and 6 in the first three matches of the five-match series against the West Indies. But he roared back to form with 77 off 47 balls in the fourth T20I on Saturday.
“It’s a significant relief because the issue was that the team wasn’t gaining momentum at the start. In T20 cricket, almost eight out of 10 times, you need to have momentum on your side. Up until now, you were playing on pitches where matches were won at around 150 runs, but even then, there was some time to settle in. Now, with the Florida pitch that should present 180+ conditions, a good start is important, and Shubman Gill’s return to form is a good sign for the team,” Chopra told JioCinema.
Talking about the match, electing to bat first, West Indies were reduced to 57/4 in 6.5 overs by the duo of Arshdeep Singh and Kuldeep Yadav.
Shai Hope (45 in 29 balls with three fours and two sixes) and Shimron Hetmyer helped WI cross the 100-run mark. Hetmyer finally clicked on the white-ball tour, scoring 61 in 39 balls, consisting of three fours and four sixes. He and Odean Smith (15* in 12 balls) helped WI reach a total of 178/8 in 20 overs.
Arshdeep (3/38) and Kuldeep (2/26) were the best bowlers for India, offering a cocktail of spin and pace that had WI in trouble in the initial stages. Axar Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal and Mukesh Kumar had a wicket each.
Chasing 179, India got the start they were just looking for. Openers Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shubman Gill took full advantage of the flat, batting-friendly nature of the surface and piled up runs, taking the team to the brink of a win single-handedly.
The 165-run opening stand between the duo ended with Gill dismissed by Romario Shepherd for 77 off 47 balls, consisting of three fours and five sixes. Jaiswal (84* in 51 balls with 11 fours and three sixes) and Tilak Varma (7*) helped India chase the total with three overs to spare.
Jaiswal earned the ‘Player of the Match’ award for his performance.
(With ANI Inputs)