India vs South Africa: Rohit Sharma slams maiden Test century as opener to answer critics in style

Hindustan Times

Hindustan Times

Author 2019-10-02 16:38:01

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Rohit Sharma answered the naysayers in style at Visakhapatnam as he eased his way to his fourth Test century on Day 1 of the first Test against South Africa. India’s limited overs vice-captain has been in the spotlight ever since the team management decided to give him a go at the top of the order in red-ball cricket, in yet another effort to revive his stop-start Test career. The decision led to criticism from several quarters as many people though it was a backward step to try Rohit in a position where even specialists have struggled in the recent past. A duck in the practice match against the Proteas did not help his cause further but Rohit was determined to answer his critics on Wednesday.

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The Mumbai batsman, who has an epic home Test record, having scored back to back centuries in his first two Test innings, showcased the full array of his strokes to get the better of a South African bowling attack, that faded away after a good start. A dry pitch at Vizag meant there wasn’t too much assistance for the pacers and Rohit did the right thing by taking his time early on.

Once settled, he started to play his strokes and was particularly severe on the spinners. He brought up half-century at stroke of lunch and had good support from his opening partner Mayank Agarwal. He started the post-lunch session with a classy boundary off the first ball of the over and slowly got the big shots in.

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Finally the moment arrived on the last ball of the 54th over of India’s innings as Rohit pushed a ball to sweeper cover off the bowling of Senuran Muthusamy to bring up his maiden Test century as an opener. Whether this helps kick-start his Test career or not remains to be seen, but Rohit has for sure made a statement of intent with his effort with the bat.

He brought up his century with the help of 10 boundaries and 4 sixes.

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