Team India’s young batting sensation Shubman Gill has revealed an interesting anecdote regarding former India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni. While recalling his international debut for the Men in Blue, Gill stated how Dhoni motivated him and boosted his morale after the Punjab cricketer couldn’t do much with the bat in his maiden game in January 2019 against New Zealand.

Gill mentioned that he was having some insecurities about his future after getting out for a mere 9 run off 21 balls against the Black Caps in Hamilton, which India eventually lost by eight wickets.

Gill reminisced that Dhoni came up and reminded him how his debut was, in fact, better as the Ranchi-born superstar was run out for a golden duck on his first game in international cricket against Bangladesh in December 2004. The 23-year-old said Dhoni calmed him down by sharing some jokes, and Gill was touched by the veteran stumper’s behaviour.

“The day I made my debut, I was dismissed when India were around 15. I was sitting outside and was sad, having scored just 9 runs in my debut. So Mahi bhai came and saw that I was very sad. I was then around 18-19 years old. He told me at least your debut was better than mine,” said Gill while speaking to actress Sonam Bajwa on her chat show ‘Dil Diyan Gallan’.

“I realised he was dismissed for a golden duck in his debut. He did not face a single ball and was run out. Then he started laughing and joking, and I was touched by that gesture,” he added.

Gill has so far played 11 Tests and 12 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) in which he has scored 579 runs. The right-handed batter has smashed four half-centuries in the longest format, while in the ODIs, he has three fifties and a hundred to his credit. Gill is currently part of India’s squad for the white-ball tour of New Zealand.


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