The performance of the Indian batsman Rohit Sharma, in Test cricket is nowhere near to his rich performance in the limited-overs cricket. But, he feels that he doesn’t need to make drastic changes in his game for the longest format.
Last month, Rohit has smashed a double century in ODIs and joint-fastest century in T20Is against Sri Lanka but he wasn’t able to replicate the same in the first Two Tests in South Africa before getting dropped from the third Test.
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Ahead of the ODI series against the Proteas, the deputy skipper said, “I give the same effort in all the formats that I play, but sometimes it comes and sometimes it doesn’t. But that doesn’t mean that you have to change things too much. You’ve got to believe in yourself, you’ve come so far and played and got success. I’ve been in a difficult situation before many times, so for me its all about taking it one game at a time and responding to situations.”
Being a crucial cog in the ODI squad, Sharma is eager to perform in the six-match series. He said, “Every batsman who will be taking part in this ODI series will have a huge role to play. I’m here to make an impact in the series. We are very keen to win this ODI series. It is important to do a lot of things right. There will be times when we will be put under pressure but as a team, we have shown that we can absorb that pressure and come back. It the same time we have shown that if we put pressure back on the opposition they tend to crumble. We are going to try to use it to our advantage.”
In 2013, Team India played the last ODI series in South Africa and they lost three-match series 2-0. Rohit said the top-order will have to come good and reverse the form from the last tour. He described, “The first thing is when we came last time, our guys were inexperienced and had hardly played in overseas conditions. It does matter because the lengths that you bowl in India and the lengths that you bowl overseas are slightly different. Now all these bowlers have enough experience and they’ve got the job done in Test series as well. They created history by taking all 60 wickets in the Test series. So it will be a different ball game this time around.”
When asked about his current ODI form, Sharma replied, “Of course the last six-seven months have been really great. I hope I can continue and put the team in a good situation. We want to get those victories away from home.”
The ODI specialists arrived in South Africa during the Johannesburg Test and the team traveled to Durban together on Monday. And they got down to serious work in the nets ahead of the first match at the Kingsmead Oval. Most noticeably, the contenders for three middle-order spots MS Dhoni, Manish Pandey, Dinesh Karthik, Shreyas Iyer and Kedar Jadhav all had long hits in the middle against both pace and spin.
Sharma emphasized on World Cup preparation
With less than 15 months to for the ICC 2019 World Cup, Rohit said that the tournament in England is at the back of Team India’s mind. He said, “I believe it will be a great way to start the series thinking about the 2019 World Cup which will be played in England. We are not thinking too much about the World Cup right now. But in the back of our mind, it is always going to be there because we can test ourselves how we respond to situations and how we respond to those conditions out there.”