Rohit will be given space to find his own game and come to his own as opener: Virat Kohli

The Statesman

The Statesman

Author 2019-10-01 16:38:00

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Indian cricketer Rohit Sharma (R) bats in the nets during a practice session prior to the first test match between India and South Africa at the Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam on September 30, 2019. - The first test match between India and South Africa will start on October 2. (Photo by Noah SEELAM / AFP)

Captain of the Indian men’s cricket team Virat Kohli stated on Tuesday that Rohit Sharma will indeed be given enough time and space to grow into his new role as a Test opener. Despite having a phenomenal record in limited-overs cricket as an opener, this will be the first time that Rohit Sharma opens the batting in Test match cricket, a format in which he hasn’t tasted that much success.

“We are in no rush as far as Rohit opening the innings is concerned,” Kohli said in his pre-match press conference prior to the first Test against South Africa in Visakhapatnam beginning on 2 October.

“He will be given space to find his own game and come into his own,” he added.

Virat stated that although the team hopes Rohit plays his natural attacking game at the top of the batting order, there is no fixed template as such which they want him to follow.

“In Test cricket it’s about finding your game in different pitches. We are not looking at a certain kind of display from Rohit. Yes, his strength is to take the game forward.

“Someone like Viru bhai (Virender Sehwag) used to do it for the team for a long period. It’s not like someone would have told him you need to get a hundred before lunch.

“It was basically his natural instinct and once he felt comfortable in his game he could demolish attacks and really put the team in pole position.

“I’m sure in time as Rohit grows into that role, he will be able to do that because he has the ability. We won’t see him following the template of (Cheteshwar) Pujara. We are not necessarily looking for one kind of mode from him at the top. It totally depends on the situation.

“If it is a challenging wicket and we are three down and he is still in, obviously you won’t see him smashing the ball all over the place. He is a mature cricketer,” he explained.

Rohit Sharma has had contrasting careers in limited overs cricket and Test match cricket. While he is considered as one of the best in the world in limited overs cricket, he has scored just over 1500 runs in his 27-match Test career.

All eyes will be on Rohit Sharma when he sets out to open the batting for India against South Africa in the first test against South Africa

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