Rohit Sharma fired on all cylinders against Afghanistan when India was chasing 273 at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi on Wednesday evening. His 131 off 84 balls not only flattened Afghanistan but also let him set a host of records. Rohit surpassed legendary Sachin Tendulkar’s 12-year-old record for most centuries in the ODI World Cups. The Indian skipper now has 7 World Cup hundreds in his kitty and also became the 4th Indian batter to score more than 1,000 runs in the history of the tournament.
Former India captain and batting great Sunil Gavaskar was in awe of Rohit Sharma who bounced back in a terrific fashion. Speaking on Star Sports network, Gavaskar said ‘risk-taker’ Rohit had missed out on several centuries to provide a good start to the team. He said, “I’m very happy that he got a hundred because he missed out on a lot of hundreds. With him, he is a risk taker. And therefore sometimes, what happens is, in the 60s, 70s – look at the number of times – where he got the team off to a flying start with half-centuries.”
He further added, “But he wants to carry on in the same way because it benefits the team. For example, today, you get that (run rate of) 8 runs per over. The strike rate, it helps your net run rate. Who knows what’s gonna happen? After another 5-6 matches. You might need those decimal points to qualify. So clearly, he might have missed out on a few hundred, but he entertained all of us. And today was another special occasion. Some of the sixes that he hit, are just unbelievable.”
Rohit Sharma smashed 5 sixes during his stay in the middle and in due process, he broke ‘Universe Boss’ Chris Gayle’s record for most sixes in international cricket. The Indian skipper leads the charts with 556 maximums, surpassing Gayle’s tally of 553 sixes.
Comparing Rohit Sharma with Virender Sehwag, Sunil Gavaskar said, “Every century of his is a delight to watch. Because there is that ease with which he seems to be caressing the ball when he is hitting the ball along the ground. Very few batters have the ability to pull, off the front foot that he does. The same thing with Virender Sehwag, Viru was also similar. Opening batter, goes bang-bang and scores 60s-70s, 80s.”
He further explained, “And look, we as cricket fans, lovers of batting, want them to carry on. So when they don’t. Then we sometimes get very upset. Like what kind of shot you have played. But they still score 60,70,80s. But we want them to go on and score a hundred. Happy that after January, he has got a hundred. Because this is what India needs, India needs a start from their skipper. The kind of flying start that is given, because that propels a team to a big score.”