Rohit Sharma's expolsive batting is a treat to watch  © Getty Images
Rohit Sharma’s elegant batting is a treat for any cricket lover © Getty Images

Rohit Sharma is an amazing talent to have graced Indian cricket in the last decade. One of the most gifted batsmen India has ever produced, Rohit’s batting radiates that classic gentility which we so rarely witness among the contemporary breed of cricketers across the globe. His timing and placement is exquisite, but at the same time, he has a sagacious approach to shot selection. Having two One-Day International (ODI) double hundreds against quality sides like Sri Lanka and Australia is not by any chance a stroke of luck. Though the pitch’s behaviour in both the games was heavily tailored for scoring runs at ease, two ODI double centuries remains a larger than life achievement. ALSO READ: How Rohit Sharma silenced me with his debut Test hundred

Having said all this, Rohit is still to prove himself on foreign soil, and can certainly better his Test record and become more consistent. When he first featured in international cricket, many experts started to compare his batting flair to that of master blaster Sachin Tendulkar’s. They went on to opine that Rohit is not toiling hard to polish his talent.  If we take a look at some of his top knocks; his 264 and 209 against Sri Lanka and Australia respectively readily come to our psyche, but Rohit’s batting talent is much more than those two innings.

A little better application on Rohit’s part can help him enter the league of Indian batsmen who are performing well overseas like Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane. Rohit has not been able to get that kind of a cult following like Kohli or AB de Villiers or that sacrosanct status which Tendulkar or MS Dhoni have, but still he is one of the most popular cricketers among the Indian fans. Good off his front and back foot, his temperament is good if not brilliant though it fluctuates a few times. He has a decent footwork, but he makes up for it with his reach and ability to see the ball a little quicker than others. ALSO READ: Rohit Sharma’s bat shuts his critics up!

His hand-eye coordination might not be as sharp as that of former Indian explosive batsman Virender Sehwag or the legendary West Indian Viv Richards, but it seems certain that it is among the best in the current crop. Rohit’s best Test innings will arguably be his 177 against West Indies in 2013. It was his debut match in the longest version of the game and he made a stylish impact. But, Alas! he has not lived up to the promise since then. What Rohit needs to understand is that a lot of things need to be learned and unlearned in international cricket; but the new rule of batting is that there are no rules when it comes to how you score runs these days. This is perceived in the case of batters who have that skill of playing unorthodox shots at will — Rohit not being the best of them.

Rohit’s talent is in executing proper cricketing shots in right areas, and he succeeds in pulling off these strokes to perfection even off the most treacherous deliveries pitched at him either by fast or spin bowlers. His ability to curb his instincts and be cool, calm and composed in different match situations was exhibited in spectacular fashion during his 137-run knock against Bangladesh in ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. If Rohit continues to apply himself harder and works on his weaknesses, there is no iota of doubt that he can be a world beater. His God-gifted elegance is certainly flowering with practice.

(Bhaskar Narayan is a reporter at CricketCountry and Criclife. He passionately follows the game and is a big fan of Sachin Tendulkar. His Twitter handle is @Cricopathy)