India vs South Africa 2nd test: Rohit Sharma backs Shubman Gill’s batting at No.3, says ‘he prefers that number’

Despite youngster Shubman Gill failing to impress while playing against South Africa at Centurion in the first Test, Indian skipper Rohit Sharma has backed him to excel at No.3 in Test cricket.

Earlier in the first test, Gill – batting at no.3 – struggled to produce a substantial outing in the first Test. He made two and 26 at the SuperSport Park and fell to pacers Nandre Burger and Marco Jansen in the first and second innings respectively. Gill’s average in Test format is a dismal 31.06 in 19 matches.

ALSO READ: Shubman Gill fails to impress in Test series against SA, here’s what Sunil Gavaskar suggests

“There is not much difference (on opening to batting at number 3). It takes just 1 ball for a number 3 to go in. And sometimes when an opener gets injured, a number 3 has to walk out and open the innings. I don’t see much difference there. Gill is smart and understands his batting pretty well,” Rohit Sharma told the reporters ahead of the second Test.

Looking at Gill’s performance in Test matches in 2023, it has not been up to the mark, as he made just 258 runs across 11 innings.

“He prefers that number. He has batted in the Ranji Trophy at that number around that position. He has opened in Test and limited overs games but the number 3 was his preference. He feels he can do well for us batting at that position. It is an individual thing about how you think about certain positions,” Rohit added.

“I hated batting at number 3 and that is my opinion. Either you open the batting or you wait a little to go down the order to bat at number 5 or 6. Since I started opening, from 3 onwards till number 7 I don’t think it is the right position for anyone,” Rohit further added.

India will now be aiming to square the series in the second and final Test against South Africa at Cape Town, starting from 3 January.

With agency inputs.

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Published: 02 Jan 2024, 07:36 PM IST

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