regular-article-logo Wednesday, 31 May 2023

Hardik Pandya to Shubman Gill, Titans nurture natural leaders

Defending champions want to focus more on is Gill’s 'professional attitude' as well as his sense of responsibility

A Staff Reporter Calcutta Published 24.03.23, 05:26 AM
Shubman Gill.

Shubman Gill. File picture

Shubman Gill did not get too many runs in the just-concluded ODI series against Australia. But Gujarat Titans aren’t too concerned about their opener’s current form.

What the defending champions want to focus more on is Gill’s “professional attitude” as well as his sense of responsibility.


“Shubman is a leader in his own right for the simple fact that he takes on a lot of responsibility. In my mind, it is not important that you play with an asterisk next to a player’s name,” the Titans’ director of cricket, Vikram Solanki, said at a virtual news conference on Thursday.

“Shubman adapted to the leadership role last year by his conduct, the way he goes about and with his professional attitude towards the game.”

Gill also appears to be the Titans’ leader for the future. “Yes, absolutely, though no decision has been made on it. But he’s a very mature and considerate young man who has an abundant amount of talent.

“He has also got a very smart cricketing brain and we’ll continue to have conversations with him and invite his opinion on every decision we make,” Solanki said.

Skipper Hardik Pandya had led from the front when the Titans won the IPL last year on debut. They believe Pandya’s leadership will once again be effective in ensuring the team goes the distance this year as well.

“I maintain that we viewed Hardik as a leader from the time he joined the team last year because he had the experience of winning several IPL titles with Mumbai Indians and played a leadership role there. It was very apparent from how he conducted himself,” Solanki, who represented England in 51 ODIs and three T20Is, said.

“Hardik took to that leadership role almost seamlessly. We are looking forward to him joining the team, as heled us tremendously well last year. We don’t know if there will be a change in his leadership since he has captained India, but I’m confident Hardik will be the same as he was last year and will keep the whole team involved.”

The Titans will miss David Miller in their IPL 2023 opener against Chennai Super Kings in Ahmedabad on March 31. Miller will be busy playing for South Africa in an ODI series against The Netherlands, which ends on April 2.

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