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Shubman Gill confirms his opening partner for 1st India vs Zimbabwe T20I
By SMCS - Jul 6, 2024 7:30 am
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With as many as four different options available for the opening spots, Team India captain Shubman Gill has confirmed who will be his partner in the T20Is against Zimbabwe. Shubman Gill, leading a young Indian team in the absence of senior players, has said that his state-mate Abhishek Sharma will be the opener alongside him for the first T20I against Zimbabwe. However, the series will be marking the start of a new era for Indian cricket, after their T20 World Cup 2026 preparation cycle.

Abhishek Sharma
Abhishek Sharma

“Abhishek Sharma will open with me and Ruturaj Gaikwad will bat at No. 3,” Gill, who was part of the T20 World Cup reserves, told reporters on the eve of the first T20I against Zimbabwe as well.

Abhishek Sharma, a standout performer in the IPL with 484 runs at an amazing strike rate of 204.22, gets his maiden T20I cap. The left-hander, known for his power-hitting in the powerplay, will provide handy left-arm spin in Harare’s slow conditions as well. It will be his much-deserving debut as well.

Rinku Singh
Rinku Singh

However, only five members – Rinku Singh, Shivam Dube, Yashavi Jaiswal, Khaleel Ahmed, and Sanju Samson – were named in the squad whereas Dube, Jaiswal, and Samson, who were part of the main World Cup squad, will miss the first two T20Is due to their extended victory celebrations as well. Jitesh Sharma, Sai Sudharshan, and Harshit Rana have been named as replacements for the first two matches.

“A lot of lessons. When I captain for the first time for my IPL team, I got to know a lot more things about myself and a lot more things about the leadership perspective. And I felt most of the challenges that you face as a captain are more mental. It’s quite a different team from the one that played in the World Cup. There are a lot of young players in the team, including myself. So I think in terms of that, we just want to give the players experience and how the international, what it is like to play at the international level because a lot of the players haven’t played that many matches and some of the players haven’t even made their debut. So I think that is our aim for the series, to give them more international exposure and experience,” Shubman Gill concluded.