Wed, 07 Jun 2023

Ahmedabad (Gujarat) [India], March 29 (ANI): New Zealand batter Kane Williamson, who will represent Gujarat Titans (GT) in the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) said on Wednesday that star India batter Shubman Gill is a "strong competitor" with a "great understanding of the game".

Gujarat Titans will kickstart its IPL 2023 campaign against four-time champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) on March 31 onwards, which will kickstart the tournament as well.

"Shubman Gill is a really strong competitor. I am sure he will learn a lot from the number of leaders he plays under. He is a fantastic guy with a great understanding of the game," said Williamson in a media interaction ahead of the season.

Shubman has shown terrific form this year across all formats. In 17 matches and 18 innings this year, he has scored 980 runs at an average of 61.25. He has scored five centuries and a fifty, with his best score being 208.

In the IPL last season, Shubman was one of the star performers for GT, which won the title in its debut season. Gill was the fifth-highest run-scorer in the tournament and GT's second-highest run-maker. In 16 matches, he scored 483 runs at an average of 34.50 and a strike rate of 132.32. His best score was 96 and he scored four fifties in the tournament.

Williamson said that it feels great to be in India and the squad is excited about the season.

"Its great to be here. Nice to meet most of the players. A couple of players are yet to come. Great to meet the management, players, get involved in training. Everyone's excited for the start of the season," said the batter.

On what he loves about India, Williamson said, "Whenever I come here, I experience the culture, which is completely different from where I am, I love this. Food as well. I love the food. We also cannot forget the passion they have for cricket."In the previous season, Gujarat finished at the top of the points table with 20 points, with 10 wins and four losses. They booked a direct ticket to the final after a seven-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals in Qualifier 1.

In the final, Gujarat once again defeated Rajasthan by seven wickets.

Skipper Pandya (487 runs in 15 matches with four fifties, eight wickets), Shubman Gill (483 runs in 16 matches with four fifties), David Miller (481 runs in 16 matches with two fifties), Mohammed Shami (20 wickets), Rashid Khan (19 wickets) were some of GT's star performers in their debut season.

Gujarat Titans: Squad strength 25 players (Overseas 8)Players bought in IPL 2023 auction- Kane Williamson (Rs 2 crore), Odean Smith (Rs 50 lakh), KS Bharat (Rs 1.2 crore), Shivam Mavi (Rs 6 crore), Urvil Patel (Rs 20 lakh), Joshua Little (Rs 4.4 crore), Mohit Sharma (Rs 50 lakh).

Players retained - Hardik Pandya (c), Shubman Gill, David Miller, Abhinav Manohar, Sai Sudharsan, Wriddhiman Saha, Matthew Wade, Rashid Khan, Rahul Tewatia, Vijay Shankar, Mohammed Shami, Alzarri Joseph, Yash Dayal, Pradeep Sangwan, Darshan Nalkande, Jayant Yadav, R Sai Kishore, Noor Ahmad. (ANI)

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