IPL 2023: Gill's sensationalism allows GT to get title defence underway with a win vs CSK; Twitter gladdened
IPL 2023: Gujarat Titans got its title defence underway with a victory over Chennai Super Kings in the event opener in Ahmedabad on Friday, thanks to Shubman Gill's batting sensationalism that sent Twitter into a frenzy.
It was a positive outing for defending champion Gujarat Titans (GT) in the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) opener against former four-time champion Chennai Super Kings (CSK) at the iconic Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Friday. Shubman Gill's sensational batting played a massive role in the success, as the triumph sent Twitter into a frenzy.
Winning the toss, GT skipper Hardik Pandya opted to field. Unlike the usual time, both teams were still determining the combination they would move in with, implying the new rule of announcing the playing XI after the toss. At the same time, both captains hugely praised the law of the Impact Player, which they did utilise during the game.
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Although CSK lost Devon Conway (1) early, in the third over of the PowerPlay (PP), to seamer Mohammed Shami who knocked him over with 14 runs on the board, fellow opener Ruturaj Gaikwad (92) and Moeen Ali (23) contributed to a 36-run stand for the second wicket before the latter fell to leg-spinner Rashid Khan in the sixth.
While CSK lost Ben Stokes (7) to Rashid in the eighth at 70, Gaikwad and Ambati Rayudu (12) added 51 for the fourth wicket before the latter departed to pacer Joshua Little in the 13th after being cleaned up. At the same time, the former had brought up his 11th IPL half-century.
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After a 30-run stand with Shivam Dube (19) for the fifth wicket, Gaikwad fell to pacer Alzarri Joseph in the 18th at 151. Thereon, CSK lost some quick wickets but did enough to finish at a par total of 178/7. For GT, Shami, Rashid and Joseph clutched a couple each, while the Afghan was decently economical.
GT suffered a setback as Kane Williamson injured his knee while attempting a Gaikwad catch at the deep mid-wicket boundary. Sai Sudharsan later replaced him as the Impact Player, while CSK brought in pacer Tushar Deshpande for Rayudu as the IP. In reply, the GT openers were off to a flier, with Wriddhiman Saha (25) and Gill (63) putting on 37 before pacer Rajvardhan Hangargekar dismissed the former in the fourth over of the PP.
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A 53-run partnership ensued between Gill and Sudharsan (22) before the latter fell to Hangargekar again in the tenth, while the former scored his 15th IPL 50. Although GT lost three more wickets thereon at every 20-odd runs, Rahul Tewatia (15*) and Rashid Khan (10*) saw the conquest with four balls to spare, while Gill had fallen to Deshpande in the 15th, at 138. For CSK, Hangargekar seized three, whereas Jadeja was economical.