Rohit pleased with a ton on return

Rohit pleased with a ton on return

 The Orange City evokes mixed emotions in Rohit Sharma. He was born here in a area called Bhansod which no longer exists by his own admission. He was to make his Test debut here in 2010 against South Africa but a freak ankle injury during warm-up on the morning of the match delayed his debut by three more years.

On a warm Sunday here, the middle day of the second Test, Rohit erased some of those bitter memories with a sparkling unbeaten century that helped him keep himself in the mix of things in Test cricket. Things only got better for the Mumbai batsman as after India wrapped up the match by an innings and 239 runs, he was named the captain of the three-match ODI series against Sri Lanka with Virat Kohli being rested for the series.

"Personally for me, it was very important as I was playing Test cricket after nearly 500 days (actually 414 days to the day)," he said after the match, when asked about his knock. "I have been waiting for this opportunity and I am glad that I could put some runs on the board for myself and team. Really happy that it was worth waiting for so long. I clearly remember this was the ground where I got injured and I had to wait three years to make my Test debut. This ground has now given me something to go back. Very happy and pleased with the way we played," he remarked.

Rohit has been phenomenal in limited-overs cricket and his Test performances often get judged in that backdrop. What, however, isn't noticed is the fact that in the shorter version, the right-hander opens the innings whereas in Tests, whenever he gets a chance that is, he bats at six. Often when he comes to bats, he doesn't get to bat much to get a bigger knock. His innings are more in 50s rather than in 100s. As batsmen always maintain that a match-winning cameo is more satisfying than a 100 in a losing cause, Rohit's Test performance should be judged by that yardstick.    

"See, for a batsman who bats up the order in certain formats and down the order in certain formats, it's different ballgame," Rohit insisted. "Having said that it's for people to judge that and talk about it. For me, it does not matter whether I bat at No 6 or at No 4 or open the batting. For me, it's whatever number I bat in, I have to make a contribution.

"My plans are simple and clear. I don't want to complicate things which I have in the past at the earliest stage when I just came into the team. I just thought too much about it and gave too much importance. At the end of the day, it's just a cricket match that you have to play, don't worry about anything else. Initially my focus was so much on Test cricket, 'oh no, this is Test cricket, I have to do well, I have to do this and that'. In thinking that I lost a lot of focus and forgot what I was there for and what I needed to do."

 

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