Home > Features >

ICC World T20 2014: India need Rohit Sharma to find his mojo back

Indian-batsman-Rohit-Sharma-celebrates-after-scoring-a-half-century(-50-runs)-during-the-sixth-match-of-the-Asia-Cup-one-day-cricket-tournament-b
Rohit Sharma scored a fine 62 against the West Indies in ICC World T20 2014 © Getty Images

By Taus Rizvi

Mar 27, 2014

Rohit Sharma‘s batting is like a puzzle that cannot be solved easily. He is a batsman who possesses much talent and class and often criticised for being inconsistent and throwing away his wicket.

Whenever the talk of him being relegated is raised or he faces the pressure of being dropped from the side, the stylish batsman comes up with a gem of a knock that only makes his critics to eat their own words. Like the other day against the West Indies.

On Sunday, Sharma batted beautifully to stay unbeaten on 62 and guide India to a seven-wicket win over Darren Sammy‘s men. He convincingly played off-spinner Sunil Narine, leg-spinner Samuel Badree and the new West Indies sensation Krishmar Santokie during his 55-ball knock that was studded with five fours and two sixes.

Only a few games earlier was he questioned for being inconsistent and the critics started building pressure by calling for the head of the 26-year-old to bring in Ajinkya Rahane, who has been warming the bench for some time now. However, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has showed faith in the opener, persisted with him and the result is there for everyone to see.

Sharma, who started off as a middle-order batsman, seems to be enjoying his role as an opener. Going through the stats, one can only say that he has been more consistent when opening the innings than batting in the middle.

The opening slot suits him perfect as he who takes his time to settle before unleashing himself on the opposition.

Read this: Of the 123 ODIs Sharma has played in, he has opened in 38 innings. Out of his 3,427 ODI runs, 1,460 have come in this position at an average of 42.94 while his overall runs per innings is 35.69.

In T20s too, he has an impressive record as an opener. From 31 T20 international innings, the Mumbaikar has opened in eight, garnering 225 runs at an average of 37.50. His corresponding T20I career figures are 625 and 31.25.

Apart from those impressive stats as an opener, Sharma is also an asset for the team whenever he performs, contributing to the victory.

The batsman has been a part of 68 ODI wins for India and has managed 2,158 runs in those games with three of his four hundreds being match-winning knocks. More than 50 per cent of his fifty-plus knocks have come in winning causes.

It is the same in T20s as well. Sharma has been a part of 22 wins and has 448 runs (625 overall) with five half-centuries coming when India have been victorious.

Lalchand Rajput believed that Sharma knows his responsibility now, but should be careful in shot selection. “There is no problem in technique. He has ample time and plays late. However, the only problem is consistency. Yes, he has to curb that. And to do that, he has to cut down on his shot selections. When you are in form, you become overconfident. But that should not be the case. He knows his responsibility and should be careful about shot selections and take the responsibility of taking the team through,” said Rajput, who was the coach-cum-manager when India won the inaugural ICC World T20 seven years ago.

“Sharma has to take one ball at a time, then only can he become consistent. He is definitely doing a great job as an opener,” added Rajput.

The former Test opener felt that if India has to win, Rohit will have to play a crucial role. “He is very crucial in World Cup. Look at the way he played the other day against West Indies. He looked mature and took on the responsibility. If India needs to win, Rohit has to be in form,” he said.

Legendary all-rounder Kapil Dev, too, has said that the Mumbai batsman has to wear his thinking cap on. “Rohit needs a better head, he is talented and he excites me,” Kapil said recently in Kuala Lumpur.

Dhoni admitted that it (62* vs West Indies) was a crucial knock for Sharma. “It was important for Rohit to bat through. We all know the kind of batsman he is on a pitch like this. He will take plenty from this game,” he said after India’s seven-wicket win.

Rohit in numbers

As an opener in ODIS

 

I R 100s 50s Ave HS
ODIs 38 1,460 2 10 42.94 209
T20Is 8 225 0 2 37.5 62*

 In winning causes for India

 

M R 100s 50s Ave HS
ODIs 68 2,158 3 13 45.91 209
T20Is 22 448 0 5 56 62*

ICC World T20 2014 Points Table and Team Standings

ICC World T20 2014 Schedule details

(Taus Rizvi is a Principal Correspondent with DNA. A club-level cricketer, he believes cricket helps in knowing a person’s character. Taus can be followed on @rizvitaus on Twitter. The above news has been republished with permission from DNA, were it first appeared)

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 30, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 2, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Khulna

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 5, 2014 (14:05 IST)   at Adelaide

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 6, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Ahmedabad

More

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 15, 2014  at Ahmedabad

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 7, 2014  at Bengaluru

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 30, 2014  at Hyderabad

Match cancelled

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014  at Hamilton

No result

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 3 wkts

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test

Videos

Tendulkar provides teaser on upcoming book

Live Cricket Score Duleep Trophy Central Zone vs South Zone, final at Delhi Day 3: Jalaj Saxena brings up half-century

Live Cricket Score Pakistan vs Australia, 2nd Test at Abu Dhabi Day 2

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

Younis Khan’s ban: why the ICC is justified

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 Central Zone Duleep Trophy Duleep Trophy 2014-15 India Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Zone South Zone vs Central Zone Sri Lanka Sri Lanka tour of India 2014

Jesse Ryder claims he still has the passion to represent New Zealand in the ICC World Cup 2015

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Allan Border claims Michael Clarke’s field setting ‘against spirit of cricket’

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: David Warner to keep wickets after Brad Haddin injures shoulder

Duleep Trophy 2014-15 final: Ali Murtaza, Piyush Chawla restrict South Zone to 379; Central trail by 35 runs at lunch

Jesse Ryder gets World Cup 2015 lifeline; picked for New Zealand A squad to tour UAE

Yuvraj Singh — have we seen the last of the man who won India three World Cups?

Younis Khan continues piling up records for Pakistan

Mythbusting — the claim that playing for a weaker batting side handicaps a batsman has no basis

Younis Khan’s ban: why the ICC is justified

KL Rahul could be opening option for India’s tour to Australia

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

678 Posts | 6 Fans

Video Highlights: Younis Khan century during Pakistan vs Australia 1st Test at Dubai

India A vs Sri Lanka: Fringe players look to impress

NGOs pursue education for all

Dance Basanti from Ungli: Put on your dancing shoes and practice the Basanti move!

Weight Loss Tip #59: Eat oranges to lose weight

Sensex surges 150 points in early trade to regain 27,000-mark

PricewaterhouseCoopers partners Google to offer business solutions to clients

Google X Lab working on nanoparticles to help detect diseases early

Priyanka Chopra has the best no make-up selfie on Instagram, think fans!

Lisa Haydon: I slept off midway while watching the original Shaukeen!

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here