Ravi Shastri, the former head coach of the Indian side, feels that Shubman Gill is possibly the only player who can break Virat Kohli's record of 973 runs in a single season of the Indian Premier League.
In a conversation with Star Sports, Shastri stated that only an opening batter or a top-order player could manage to get closer to the milestone.
"He has to be an opening batsman because only then will he get many opportunities to score runs. I feel it is Subhman Gill because he is in good form and also because he plays top of the order. So he will get good number of opportunities to score runs. The pitches are good, so if he can score 80-100 runs consecutively in two or three innings, he will already have 300-400 runs.," he said.
"According to me, it is very difficult to break the record because 900 plus runs is huge, but one thing is opening batsmen will get two extra matches and two extra innings, so opening batsmen can only break this record if it is possible," he further added.
The former player also praised Vijay Shankar for his sublime half-century against the Knight Riders that laid the foundation for the home team in posting 204 runs in the first innings.
After a string of low scores and injuries that hampered his game in the last couple of years, the right-handed batter scored an unbeaten 63 off 24 deliveries to get back into some rhythm in the tournament.
Shankar was part of the Indian side for the 2019 World Cup and the coach explained the decision behind the selector's decision to include him in the squad.
"In my opinion, the selector's thinking was such that, just like his innings that we have seen in this year’s IPL, that kind of innings plus his bowling is a big factor in his getting selected. When he got injured during the 2019 World Cup, he got a fracture on his toe and was out for a long time," he said.
"He has the talent, he has worked hard to get back to his best, and you know, at that time, even Hardik was facing a lot of injury issues, so India was looking for a player who could replace Hardik and give at least two or three overs to the team and bat well, so it was always to keep Shankar ready in case Hardik got injured so that there was a quality replacement,” Shastri concluded.