“Give Shubman Gill some time to find it please”: Kevin Pietersen

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New Delhi: Former England batter Kevin Pietersen has backed young Indian batter Shubman Gill to come good in Test cricket, saying that the batter should be given time to find his feet in the longest format of the sport.

Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Pietersen pointed out that the South African all-rounder Kallis had an underwhelming start to his Test career, averaging 22, but he turned out to be an all-time great of the game. He also said that Gill is a “serious player”.

“Kallis averaged 22 in his first 10 Tests and turned out to be arguably the greatest player to play the game. Give @ShubmanGill time to find it please. He’s a serious player! #INDvENG,” said Pietersen.

Gill first got acclaim for his fine performances in India’s inspiring series win over Australia in Australia back in 2020-21. In six innings across three matches, he scored 259 runs at an average of 51.80, with two half-centuries. His best score of 91 came in the historic win at The Gabba, Australia’s first loss at the venue in 32 years back then, in the fourth and final match.

But since that famous win, Gill’s Test numbers have been underwhelming. Since then, he has featured in 19 Tests, scoring just 838 runs in 34 innings at an average of 26.18. He has scored just two centuries and two fifties, with the best score of 128.

Overall in 22 Tests, Gill has made 1,097 runs at an average of 29.64, with two centuries and four fifties.
Since the ICC World Test Championship against Australia back in June last year, Gill has scored just 207 runs in 12 innings at a poor average of 18.81, with the best score of 36.

Coming to the match, India ended day one at 336/6, with Yashasvi Jaiswal unbeaten at 179 in 257 balls, with 17 fours and five sixes along with Ravichandran Ashwin (5*). Knocks from Gill, Iyer, debutant Rajat Patidar (32) and Axar Patel (27) provided decent support to the left-hander.

Debutant Shoaib Bashir (2/100) and Rehan Ahmed (2/61) dominated the opening day with their spin bowling, not allowing Indian batters to make the best of their fine starts.

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