India opener Gill stars as Gujarat sink Punjab in IPL

Gujarat Titans' Shubman Gill walks back to the pavilion after his dismissal during the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match between Punjab Kings and Gujarat Titans at the Punjab Cricket Association I.S. Bindra stadium in Mohali on 13 April 2023.

India opener Shubman Gill starred in a six-wicket win for defending IPL champions Gujarat Titans over Punjab Kings in Mohali on Thursday.

Hardik Pandya-led Gujarat were cruising towards victory until England all-rounder Sam Curran removed Gill for 67 in the final over of the chase to raise hopes for Punjab.

Punjab, captained by former India opener Shikhar Dhawan, could only score 153-8 after they were put in to bat by their opponents.

Curran, the most expensive player in tournament history at $2.23 million, tried to defend seven off the last over but Rahul Tewatia smacked the penultimate ball for four to win the game.

Earlier, none of the Punjab batters managed to convert their slow and scratchy starts into a bigger score as they faced a very disciplined bowling performance from Gujarat.

Former India pacer Mohit Sharma, who made his debut for Pandya's team, bowled tight lines and took a tidy 2-18 in a man-of-the-match display.

Sharma was well supported by Afghanistan's Rashid Khan (1-26), West Indies quick Alzarri Joseph (1-32) and Ireland's Josh Little (1-31).

Punjab lost Prabhsimran Singh for a second-ball duck and Dhawan (8) soon followed.

Australian Matthew Short steadied the innings with 36 off 24 balls before falling to Khan's spin, while Sri Lanka's Bhanuka Rajapaksa needed 26 balls to score 20 before Joseph took his wicket.

Shahrukh Khan's quick-fire 22 and contributions from Curran (22) and Jitesh Sharma (25) took Punjab to a below-par score.

In contrast, Gujarat openers Gill and Wriddhiman Saha (30) laid a good foundation with a 48-run partnership in the chase.

They were backed by youngster Sai Sudharsan (19) and South African David Miller (17 not out) before Tewatia hit the winning runs.