Harbhajan Singh has revealed that he will be delighted if young opener Shubman Gill ends up playing more Test matches than him. The veteran off-spinner believes the 21-year-old has what it takes to be successful for Team India, but just needs to focus on his cricket more than anything else.
Shubman Gill became the first player from Punjab to make his Test debut for Team India in 14 years. The right-handed batsman received his maiden cap in the Boxing Day Test and was unfazed by the big occasion as he handled the Australian bowlers nicely.
— ICC (@ICC) January 19, 2021
In three Tests Down Under, Shubman Gill scored 259 runs at a brilliant average of 51.8. He has also formed a formidable opening partnership with Rohit Sharma. Speaking to India Today, Harbhajan Singh explained why he feels the youngster can succeed at the international arena.
“My only advice to my younger brother Shubman Gill will be to stay focus and look forward all the time. You’re the first opener after (Navjot Singh) Siddhu to play for India (from Punjab). I hope you end up playing more Test matches than Navjot Singh Siddhu and I’d (be) more than happy and proud if you end up playing more Test matches than me,” Harbhajan Singh said.
Shubman Gill scored two half-centuries on the tour Down Under, including a crucial 91 at the Gabba, as Team India won the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2-1. He has already been tipped to lead India in the future.
However, Harbhajan wants the youngster to focus on his game. He believes Shubman Gill possesses the talent to thrive in international cricket for a long time.
“I don’t know whether he’ll be captain of India or not but I want him to play as many years as he can. He’s got the game, he’s got the mindset. It will come down to hard work and keeping the focus and giving importance to the game which he has been giving over the years,” Harbhajan Singh asserted.
The 40-year-old reckons Gill might now receive extra attention as he is slowly making his mark in international cricket. As a result, Harbhajan feels the youngster’s real challenge starts now.
“It will be even more difficult now as he will have a lot of other commitments since he’s a name now, he’s a known boy, a lot of endorsements and other things will come his way but he needs to stay focused,” Harbhajan added.
Following his herocs in Australia, it seems Shubman Gill has managed to cement his place in the Indian Test team. The opener has been selected for the upcoming four-match Test series against England.
There’s only one way to keep a team happy, keep winning 😉 pic.twitter.com/ImkkoGvH4M
— Shubman Gill (@RealShubmanGill) January 19, 2021