Rohit Sharma may have 31 ODI hundreds in his kitty but the Indian skipper is the last person to play the game for personal milestones or gratification, legendary Sunil Gavaskar said ahead of India’s all-or-nothing World Cup semi-final against New Zealand on Wednesday.
Rohit is currently India’s second-highest run-scorer in this competition after Virat Kohli, amassing 503 in nine matches at an average of 55.88 and a strike rate of 121.49, including a ton and three half-centuries.
”Well, I don’t think Rohit Sharma is going to change his game because that’s how he’s playing throughout this tournament. He hasn’t been bothered about any personal landmarks or milestones,” Sunil Gavaskar told ‘Star Sports’.
”He’s looking to get the team up to a flying start because what that does, it puts the opposition under pressure and gives his team the platform from where they can then capitalize on the remaining 40 overs,” Gavaskar analysed the Indian skipper’s approach. ”So in the first 8 -10 overs, he’s really going to slam back at the bowling and he’s putting the opposition on the back foot with that attacking batting. He also has a very able and very capable partner as Shubman Gill, whose note no with behind him. He’s almost matching him stroke for stroke,” he added.
The dew could be a positive factor in the semi-finals, said the former Indian skipper.
”Well, if you have got a good bowling attack like India have, it doesn’t really matter if they are bowling first or bowling second. Clearly, if they are bowling, second, it will help because we’ve seen under a little bit of dew that comes in, the ball flies to the wicket keeper a little bit quicker. ”So, it certainly will help the three new ball bowlers in the Indian line-up for sure, and it also helps a spinner like Kuldeep Yadav to get the ball to skid out of the surface also quicker,” he further explained.
”It is special to be back playing at your home ground”
Rohit, along with Shreyas Iyer and Suryakumar Yadav, would take the tally of the Mumbai lads in the Indian side to three during their semi-final clash here.
On the same note, Gavaskar asserted that it would indeed be a special feeling for the three, especially in front of their families and friends.
”Believe me, it is special to be back playing at your home ground, and for these three boys as well, they have played so much of their cricket at the Wankhede stadium.” ”It will be really special because the crowd will be there and their families will be there, and when you know everybody you have grown up playing cricket with, maybe in the maidans or maybe in the gullies, they are all going to be there, it just makes it that much more special.” ”And, you want to, therefore, do well for those people, and when you go back at the end of day’s play that those same people will pat you on the back, that’s a feeling that is unforgettable,” he added.