India’s cricketers sweated it out under the Lucknow sun on Friday, two days ahead of their ICC World Cup fixture against England.
Shubman Gill, who has scored five hundreds this year but is yet to stamp his mark on the ongoing tournament, was the cynosure of all eyes as repeatedly tackled the short ball.
Since recovering from a bout of dengue that forced him to miss India’s first two fixtures the opener scored 26, 53 and 16. With 1,325 runs in ODIs to his credit this year, he looked good in all those innings but was unable to make it count.
As India look to continue their winning run in the tournament, a special effort is expected from Gill. Facing the short ball is something he relishes, though he was out slashing at a short, wide delivery in the match against New Zealand in Dharamsala.
The others who attended the optional nets session were Ishan Kishan, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami and Kuldeep Yadav.
Captain Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah and Ravichandran Ashwin relaxed in the team hotel having done their bit on Thursday.
Kishan, the team’s reserve opener, also had a long hit.
Like it was the case on Thursday, the bowlers also spent some time on brushing up their batting skills.
India have a long tail which hasn’t been tested considering the stellar form of the specialists batters.
Shami, who took five wickets against New Zealand, his first game of the tournament, batted after rolling his arm over, while it was the other way around for Siraj.
Pacer Shardul Thakur and Kuldeep, the team’s premier spinner, also went through the motions with the bat.
Towards the end of the session, head coach Rahul Dravid had a rather long look at the red soil pitch, part of which was re-laid for the World Cup after Hardik Pandya called the surface for a T20 game against New Zealand earlier this year a “shocker”.
- World Cup 2023
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