Former India opener turned veteran commentator Aakash Chopra has said that the Gujarat Titans’ (GT) bowling did not have an effect during last night’s IPL 2022 match against the Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). Put in to bat first, they set a target of 163 runs for SRH. However, their bowlers were failed to restrict them as Kane Williamson’s side registered a comfortable eight-wicket win.
While reflecting on the Gujarat Titans’ bowling effort, Aakash Chopra said: “This match went in a different fashion. I am saying that because you have a hypothesis that this team’s bowling is good but nothing like that happened. Rashid Khan got just one wicket against his old team and Hardik Pandya got one wicket. Lockie Ferguson – nearly 50 runs in his four overs. I didn’t expect that. Mohammed Shami – bowls really well but remained wicketless in this match. You expect a lot more from Rashid Khan but here that too did not happen.”
Chopra explained: “Till now, Gujarat Titans were taking two to four wickets in the powerplay and this time they could take two wickets in the entire match. It seemed the excellent bowling suddenly did not have the sharpness. They took out the sword but it seemed it was rusted.”
Notably, the Titans had claimed nine wickets in the powerplay in their last three matches. However, they had to wait until the ninth over for a breakthrough against SRH, with Williamson and Abhishek Sharma adding a 64-run partnership as well. While talking about that, he said that Williamson could have been dismissed in the very first over.
He said: “I believed the openers will not score runs because no one had scored runs against them. Kane Williamson was out in the first over itself, he was hit right in front of the wickets. He would have been given out if they had taken the DRS. Abhishek Sharma batted well, luck was slightly in his favor, it was quite an interesting kind of innings. He scored more than 40 runs and took his team to a safe position. In fact, Kane Williamson was playing at run-a-ball till then. It means Abhishek Sharma allowed him to do that.”
While reviewing the Gujarat Titans’ batting performance, Aakash Chopra added that a failure was around the corner for Shubman Gill. He further added that Matthew Wade and Sai Sudharsan couldn’t utilise the starts they got.
He said: “Gujarat Titans were asked to bat first. The truth is that someone else also has to absorb the pressure because Shubman Gill was due to fail. He had played two good knocks, it is impossible to play good knocks consistently. He got out, Rahul Tripathi took an amazing catch. Matthew Wade had to score runs here but he couldn’t. He got a start but got out one more time, he has had four consecutive bad encounters. There is a slight problem in the batting after that. Sai Sudharsan came and played for a little while but could not do a great job.”
He also added that Hardik Pandya could not take the team home at the end of the Gujarat Titans innings.
“After that, Hardik Pandya comes and starts at the speed of a rocket. But he hit just one boundary in the last seven overs. David Miller didn’t really score runs. Abhinav Manohar got the chance to showcase his talent. He did a great job. He did get lives, catches were dropped, if they had been held the story might have been different but he made a crucial contribution. Rahul Tewatia played a good shot and the team reached a fighting score,” Aakash Chopra concluded.