For long, Rohit Sharma was one of the most talked-about subject on social media. Trollers would love have a go at the stylish batsman, who is often referred to as ‘most talented’, ‘god gifted’ and the like. And, he was questioned for his lack of consistency and for being given a longer rope compared to any other player.
But things have changed now. Not on the internet, though. He still sets Twitter ablaze, but people praise the Mumbaikar more than making fun at his expense. Fans now have strong faith in his batting abilities, that he is finally living up to his potential.
Although a big hit in the Indian Premier League, he is yet to prove himself in Test cricket. However, he is doing justice to his so-called natural talent in the two shorter formats of in international cricket: ODIs and T20 Internationals. With each passing day, he is attaining maturity and is now batting more responsibly than ever before.
And the latest proof of it is the opener’s classy 83 on a green track against Bangladesh at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on Wednesday. On a seamer-friendly wicket and a potent Bangladeshi attack where the likes of Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina struggled, Rohit was the only batsman who looked capable of weathering the storm.
He soaked in the pressure at a time when India were 42/3, before tearing apart an attack that troubled India in the ODI series last year. Barring a life on 21 where Shakib-al-Hasan dropped him at point off fast bowler Taskin Ahmed, Rohit’s 55-ball knock – laced with seven fours and three sixes – was a chanceless innings that gave India a match-winning total.
The 28-year-old’s childhood coach Dinesh Lad felt that with age, Rohit’s maturity is going to new levels, which is helping him becoming more consistent, something that was his bane a few years ago.
“It all started after the 2011 World Cup snub, after which he became hungrier. But he started scoring after he was given a chance to open the innings in 2013 before the Champions Trophy. However, the consistency has come due to his maturity. As you grow, you become more responsible and get the experience,” said Lad.
“If you look at the knock on a difficult track against Bangladesh, it was due to the experience that he could play that kind of an innings. You had to stay at the wicket when the wickets were falling at the other end and the ball was moving. He did that, stuck to his basics, respected the good balls and then went for his shots once he got his eye in. Maybe a younger Rohit might have gone for a big shot early on in the innings. But he built his innings very well,” added Lad.
Rohit himself admitted that he has been richer with experience.
“Experiences play a huge part in this game,” Rohit told bcci.tv. “The more cricket you play, the more experience you get as to how you need to build your innings, what is required by the team and identifying your game etc.
These things have helped me a lot in the past. Batting at the top of the order has put up added responsibility on my shoulders. Being a top order batsman, it is a responsibility to get the team to a good score and make winning matches a habit,” he added.
Lad said marriage could also be one of the reasons behind his maturity.
“It could be. After marriage, you become a responsible man. He married someone whom he wanted to and this could be the reason behind his form. He is a happy man and I hope he continues to perform in the same way.” he added.