‘We had a six-hitting competition, those two were far ahead…’: Gaikwad's fascinating revelation on India T20I squad
Ruturaj Gaikwad was the highest run-scorer for Team India in the recent T20I series against Australia.
Ruturaj Gaikwad showcased formidable performances in India's recent T20I series against Australia; he had smashed a stellar century in the third T20I of the sreries, and scored 223 runs across five matches, playing a pivotal role in India's series victory. His presence at the crease proved crucial as he played the anchor role, allowing explosive batters like Yashasvi Jaiswal, Suryakumar Yadav, Ishan Kishan, and Rinku Singh to play their natural game and support India in securing a 4-1 series win against Matthew Wade's side.
In a revealing insight into the team dynamics during the Australia series, Gaikwad disclosed about an internal six-hitting competition within the squad. Yashasvi Jaiswal and Rinku Singh emerged as clear leaders in this friendly competition, showcasing their prowess in hitting boundaries. Yashasvi had exhibited an impressive strike rate of 168.29 in the T20I series against Australia, while Rinku, serving as the designated finisher in all five matches, displayed a brilliant strike rate of 175.
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“There was a six-hitting competition between some of the players during the five-match T20I series against Australia. We didn’t have much to practice before the 1st T20I against South Africa, however, we had some before the series opener against Australia. We had fun and enjoyed hitting sixes during the practice, so obviously, I would say Rinku and Yashasvi are far ahead of all the others,” Gaikwad told Star Sports.
The opening pair of Jaiswal and Gaikwad faced a challenging start to the series against Australia, with the latter being dismissed for a duck without facing a delivery, courtesy of a run-out. However, the duo showcased resilience and made a stylish recovery, providing India with strong starts in the subsequent games. Gaikwad attributes the success of their partnership to Yashasvi's attacking style of play, emphasizing how it eases his role as the opening batter.
“Mostly, he is the one who goes for the attacking shots from Ball 1. Yashasvi is the kind of player who doesn’t hold back. I just have to figure out a few risks, and play according to what the team requires. Definitely, when someone like Yashasvi is going hard at the other end, it’s obviously crucial for me to hold the other end and let him express the way he wants to. I enjoy batting with him,” he added.
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