ATCH | ICC U-19 World Cup: Shubman Gill continues his Bradmanesque form with ‘help’ of this superstition – India tamed arch rivals Pakistan in the semi-final of the ICC Under-19 World Cup on Tuesday. The feat was achieved largely due to a brilliant century by middle-order batsman Shubman Gill.
India batted first and put up a competitive 272/9 at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch. Prithvi Shaw’s boys went on to win the match by a mammoth margin of 203 runs after shooting out Pakistan for merely 69.
Gill was rightfully awarded the Man of the Match for his 94-ball unbeaten 102. The right-hander has been India’s top-scorer in the tournament so far. He has amassed 341 runs in six matches, with three fifties and a century.
Here are Gill’s Bradmanesque stats
Shubman Gill in this #U19CWC
63, 90*, 86, 102* — 341 runs at ave of 170.50.
His overall U-19 career:
Bought by KKR in the #IPLAuction for 1.8 crores.
— Bharath Seervi (@SeerviBharath) January 30, 2018
Gill was bought for an impressive 1.8 crore by Kolkata Knight Riders at the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2018 Auction over the weekend.
Speaking to the media at the end of the match on Tuesday, Gill revealed one superstition of his that has kept him in good stead for years now.
The 18-year-old is always seen batting with a red handkerchief hanging from his waist. Asked what was the reason for that, Gill replied, “I’ve been wearing one since I was young. Earlier it used to be white. But I wore a red handkerchief in one match and it worked, so I’ve been carrying the same colour since about 3-4 years now.”
Asked if he remembers when was the first time he wore a red handkerchief, Gill said, “It was a long time ago, sir. Under-16 state match. I’d scored a hundred in that match and ever since then I’ve had a red handkerchief on me.”
Watch Gill’s interview here
Another cricketer who instantly comes to mind when one thinks of a red handkerchief is Australian legend Steve Waugh. While Gill hangs the cloth around his waist, Waugh used to famously carry it in his pocket.
This was Gill’s sixth consecutive score of 50 or more. He had struck two fifties on a tour of England in August and three earlier in this tournament ‘ 63 against Australia, 90 not out versus Zimbabwe and 86 versus Bangladesh in the quarter-finals. He did not get to bat in a 10-wicket win over Papua New Guinea in the preliminary league.
Gill got to his century off what was to be the last ball of the innings. He lofted Musa to long-off, where captain Hassan Khan dropped an easy catch. Gill ran two to move from 99 to 101 but was to learn later that it was a no-ball. He then got a single off the resultant free-hit to complete the innings.
In the final match in Tauranga on February 3, India will lock horns with Australia, whom they had defeated by 100 runs in the preliminary league. Both the sides have won the title three times each, which means Saturday’s winners will become the most successful nation in the history of the tournament.