Shubman Gill, who struggled against Pakistan’s pace trio during his innings of 10 off 32 balls, acknowledged the challenges of facing bowlers like Shaheen Shah Afridi and Haris Rauf, emphasizing that the lack of exposure to them makes a “difference” in multi-nation events.
The Indian top-order has grappled with Afridi’s inswingers and the unconventional angles he creates, primarily due to their unfamiliarity with his style, despite studying numerous videos of his bowling.
“We don’t play against Pakistan as often as we do against some other teams. We all know that their bowling attack is quite good and when you don’t play against such attacks often it makes a bit of difference in main tournaments,” Gill candidly admitted.
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India usually faces Pakistan only during Asia Cup or ICC events, which contributes to this lack of familiarity.
Gill expressed confidence in Nuwan Seneviratne, the left-arm throw-down specialist, to provide better preparation against Afridi and Pakistan’s fast bowlers in general. Gill noted, “It does help in any conditions that you play.”
Explaining the impact of Pakistan’s fast bowlers, Gill said, “They are very different fast bowlers and they have their own specialties. Shaheen gets the ball to swing a lot. Naseem is all about pace and likes help from the wicket. They present different challenges in different conditions.”
Gill stressed the importance of Indian openers dominating from the start, highlighting his partnership with captain Rohit Sharma. He explained their distinct styles and approaches, making it challenging for opponents to contain them.
Afridi, known for his in-swinging deliveries, poses a significant threat to India. In the league match, he dismissed Rohit and Virat Kohli to disrupt India’s top-order.
Despite the unique pressure of playing against Pakistan, Gill mentioned that there is always pressure in any match. He acknowledged that the atmosphere is different but emphasized that the team experiences similar nerves regardless of the opponent.
Gill expressed admiration for Pakistan captain Babar Azam, emphasizing his world-class talent and the team’s respect for him.
(With Inputs From PTI)