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Irfan Pathan wants Rohit Sharma to bat as freely in IPL 2024 as 2023 World Cup
By SMCS - Jan 6, 2024 9:00 am
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Former India pace bowler Irfan Pathan wants Rohit Sharma to play with the same approach in IPL 2024 that he had in the 2023 ODI World Cup. However, the Mumbai Indians (MI) traded in Hardik Pandya from the Gujarat Titans (GT) before the IPL 2024 auction and named him as their skipper for the upcoming edition as well, replacing Rohit, who led them to five IPL titles as well.

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma led MI to a remarkable comeback

During a discussion on Star Sports, Pathan said: “Did he not have the captaincy restrictions in the 50-over World Cup? They were there and he played with an amazing strike rate. I think having the captaincy or not won’t make a difference. The approach he has changed for the last little while will make the difference. I feel he will continue that template.”

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He again shared: “It took him close to one to one-and-a-half years to get that template. Earlier, Rohit Sharma used to take his time for the first two or three overs and then used to run fast. In the last two years, he took the responsibility and said that he would run fast from the first over and he has started getting the results of that now.”

Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma and Cameron Green

Rohit Sharma hit 597 runs at a great strike rate of 125.94 in 11 games in the 2023 World Cup. He also finished as the second-highest run-scorer as well, behind only Virat Kohli, who had 765 runs in his name at a strike rate of 90.31 as well. Irfan Pathan also shared that Rohit Sharma does not run after captaincy and only plays well for however long he stays in the middle.

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“Rohit Sharma is not a character who wants captaincy. These things do not matter too much to him. He lost the first Test match here (in South Africa) as captain. A day later, two youngsters didn’t go for practice, but Rohit Sharma went,” Irfan Pathan concluded. “He is extremely focused. He is saying that for as many years he will play cricket, whether it’s for India or the Mumbai Indians, he wants to finish by playing good cricket at the top level. It could be two or three years. His fans will want him to play forever, but that’s not the reality.”