Home > Features >

Rohit Sharma: The flashes of brilliance have to give way to match-winning innings of substance

Rohit Sharma: The flashes of brilliance have to give way to match-winning innings of substance

Rohit Sharma has to put a very high price on his wicket if his cameos have to give way to match-winning innings of substance © AFP

By Sarang Bhalerao

An article about Rohit Sharma almost unfailingly has mentions of his precocious talent and the inexplicable yo-yo swings of his cricketing career. For someone who is so incredibly and unquestionably blessed with a divine sense of timing, his track record is truly bewildering. Rohit has a rare gift of spotting the ball a fraction of a second earlier than most other batsmen. As a young apprentice, his temperament was considered solid.

Everyone who saw him bat touted him to be the next big thing. Some even hailed him as the next Sachin Tendulkar  — never an easy burden to carry. Nevertheless young Rohit blossomed at the international level. Being a Mumbaikar, the khadoos attitude was intrinsic in his DNA. The beginning was a fairytale. India won their first ever One-Day international (ODI) series in Australia in 2008 and Rohit scored a polished 66 in the final at Sydney.

The interesting facet about Rohit’s batting is his ability to play every shot in the book. Over a period of six years, he has scripted dazzling run-a-ball knocks. He has been a finisher in the past, and now emerged as India’s answer for an opener. Rohit has chosen to bide his time and construct an innings. He has chosen wisely. There is a contrast in his batting though: He respects good balls and hits the bad balls  without any trouble. Yet, sometimes, there is a sudden rush of blood out which truncates a promising compendiums. It’s like a promising novel ending prematurely as a short story.

For a writer, he is one of the most difficult batsmen to write on. A resplendent drive might elicit poetic paragraphs, but then an ugly swipe will make the writer tear his hair apart in frustration.

Against the West Indies on Sunday, he built a carefully-crafted  edifice — a laboured 60 off 88 deliveries —before attempting an impetuous big hit off Darren Sammy. India were well-placed at 124 for three in the 31st over and there was no need for a big hit at that stage. There was a batting powerplay at India’s disposal. What if the well-set Rohit would have batted till the 50th over? It certainly would have made a difference in the final analysis as India lost the match by the narrowest of margin — by one-wicket.

In the ICC Champions Trophy 2013, barring the final, Rohit gift-wrapped his wicket to the opposition. A half-hearted pull against South Africa, a cheeky leg-glance against the West Indies, a feeble flick against Pakistan and a mindless slog against the Sri Lanka — each dismissal ending a promising enterprising knock.

There is no excuse for Rohit; there can be none. He has to put a very high price on his wicket if the cameos have to give way to match-winning innings of substance.

The immediate goal should be to carry on batting till at least the 40th over after getting the start. His CV will look a lot better with more hundreds rather than the dazzling half-centuries.

The inner demons have to be conquered. It is high time Rohit vindicates his talent and wins matches for India.

(Sarang Bhalerao hails from a family of doctors, but did his engineering. He then dumped a career in IT with Infosys to follow his heart and passion and became a writer with CricketCountry. A voracious reader, Sarang aspires to beat Google with his knowledge of the game! You can follow him on Twitter here)

India tour of England 2014

Jul 27, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Southampton

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 6, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Galle

India tour of England 2014

Aug 7, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Manchester

South Africa in Zimbabwe, 2014

Aug 9, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Harare

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 14, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Colombo

More

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 24, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 100 runs

South Africa tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Jul 24, 2014  at Colombo

Match drawn

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 22, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 2 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 20, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 8 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 18, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 6 wkts

Photos

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test

Videos

Highlights of Phil Hughes' double ton

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: Long live the King

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: The last great pace bowling all-rounder

India vs England Live Cricket Score 3rd Test Day 4 at Southampton: England set 445-run target against India

Alastair Cook England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of Sri Lanka 2014 South Africa vs Sri Lanka South Africa vs Sri Lanka 2014 Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs South Africa Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2014

India vs England 2014, Day 4 of 3rd Test at Southampton: England launch blistering attack

England set India 445-run target at Tea on Day 4 of 3rd Test at Southampton

Jacques Kallis is one of the greatest players to grace cricket: Haroon Lorgat

Jacques Kallis retires but wishes to help Kolkata Knight Riders in defending IPL title

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket; to continue playing in IPL and Big Bash

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: Long live the King

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: How the legend began

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: The last great pace bowling all-rounder

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: Statistical comparison with other all-rounders

Jacques Kallis retirement: Highest average for batsmen with over 20,000 international runs

Fan of the Day

Fan Cricket

Fan Cricket

11 Posts | 2 Fans

Brazil vs Netherlands, 3rd place Fifa World Cup 2014 match Video Highlights

Rafael to miss rest of Man Utd’s tour of the USA with groin injury

England set India 445 at Tea on Day 4 of 3rd Test at Southampton

Jacques Kallis retires from international cricket: Long live the King

Vote: Should BJP form government in Delhi with fractured mandate or face fresh Assembly elections?

9 zoos issued show cause notices: Javadekar

Connected devices have huge security holes: Study

Samsung Gear S is reportedly the company’s next smartwatch

Allu Arjun wraps up Rudhramadevi shoot!

Prevent Diabetes Tip – get regular health check-ups

233 proposals pending before panel on wildlife

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here