Indian opener Ruturaj Gaikwad attributes his game sense in T20s, focusing on reading the score and adapting his batting to the situation, to his Chennai Super Kings (CSK) captain MS Dhoni.
In the fourth T20I against Australia, Gaikwad played a 32-run innings off 28 balls, contributing to India’s total of 174/9, securing a 20-run victory.
In the third game, he delivered a remarkable 123 runs off 57 balls, the second-highest T20I score in a losing effort. Gaikwad initially scored 21 runs off 21 balls before accelerating to 102 runs off the next 36 balls.
“No, definitely. I would say I learned being in CSK because, you know, Mahi bhai is always keen on reading situations, you know, understanding the game, how the game will progress.”
”And he is more or less sends a message where you have to look for a team score,” he said on Jio Cinema on Friday.
“You know what the team requires at that certain stage, irrespective of where you are batting, Either you are batting on 15 or not out or you just started, what the team requires just in particular that over. So I think that has stayed with me. And I’m trying to continue that,” Gaikwad added.
Currently, the opener leads the series in runs, accumulating 213 at an average of 71 and a strike rate of 166.41.
“Technique does not shackle you, it liberates you” – Aakash Chopra views on Gaikwad
After Gaikwad’s century on Tuesday, former cricketer turned commentator Aakash Chopra commented that the innings made him realize that having good technique doesn’t limit a player but rather “frees” them.
“He had scored 22 runs off his first 22 balls and you were thinking what was happening. It was a reconstruction phase but Surya was hitting and Rutu was still taking his time. 210-220 had to be scored. You couldn’t have even fought in anything less than that,” he said.
“Then Ruturaj Gaikwad changed gears. Certain players make you realize repeatedly that technique does not shackle you, it liberates you. He batted extremely well. He was brilliant, scored 123,” Chopra added.
India and Australia are set to face off in the fifth and last T20I on Sunday, commencing at 7:00 pm IST.