Rohit Sharma Opens Up on MS Dhoni, D/N Test & Playing in Delhi Air

Rohit will be leading Team India against Bangladesh in the three-match T20 series, starting on Sunday in New Delhi.

Updated02 Nov 2019, 06:42 AM IST
5 min read

Video Editor: Abhishek Sharma
Video Journalist: Sumit Badola

Over 500 runs from 4 innings, two hundreds, a double-hundred and a batting average hovering around 130. Rohit Sharma could do nothing wrong with the bat against the visiting South African side in the recently concluded three-match Test series.

However, what makes this superlative effort from Rohit extra special is the fact that this was his first Test series batting in the opener’s position. Struggling to find a place in the Indian middle order in the longer format for the last couple of years, this dream outing against the depleted Proteas will do a world of good to Rohit.

But the batsman wouldn’t like to read too much into it and believes he needs to be consistent with his performances before staking any claim to the opener’s spot.

“I wouldn’t look too much into it only because it has been a good start. And that is where I want to leave things right now. I would like to focus what is coming ahead rather than saying I have finally cemented the position and things like that. I don’t want to focus on that plus it is irrelevant.”
Rohit Sharma to The Quint

“I want to focus on doing well, which I have been doing all these years. And I have seen you get results when you do that. So, there is no reason to go away from that. Just to be focused on what is coming up is very very key for me and probably I will be doing that,” said Rohit at event in the New Delhi where he was announced as the brand ambassador of Trusox – an international socks brand.

Rohit’s next assignment will be leading Team India against Bangladesh in the three-match T20 series, starting on Sunday, 3 November, in New Delhi. Rohit will be donning the captain’s hat in the absence of Virat Kohli, who has been rested for the series.

But even before the series could begin, the opening tie in the national capital is in the news for all the wrong reasons.

With the increased level of pollution post-Diwali in New Delhi, green activists have urged that the 1st T20I on 3 November should be shifted out of Delhi. But BCCI has declined any such possibility, citing logistical nightmare due to the timing of the whole incident.

When asked Rohit about the prevailing condition in New Delhi and the toll it may take on players’ health, the Mumbai batsman agreed on the harmful effects but said if the match isn’t rescheduled by the cricketing body there is hardly anything the cricketers can do.

“See anything which is harmful is harmful, as simple as that. As of now we are scheduled to play the game on the given date, and we will play on the given date. I don’t know what exactly is going to happen in future. But I can talk what is happening now,” Rohit told The Quint.

“As of now there is no information of what is going to happen. The game is scheduled to happen on the third at 7:00 pm. And it will happen on that particular date.”
Rohit Sharma

The T20 series against Bangladesh will be followed by a two-match Test series. This will be the first time Bangladesh will be playing Tests in India. But what makes the series more momentous is that fact that for the first time India will be playing a day-night Test match.

The second Test against Bangladesh at Eden Gardens in Kolkata, starting from 22 November, will be played under lights. And Rohit Sharma has welcomed the decision highlighting how important it was for India to join the ‘pink ball’ party.

“It (day-night Test) is a great step moving forward. All the other teams have played before. We were only team who didn’t play. It is always nice to get into that mode of playing the pink ball Test match.”
Rohit Sharma

But he is fully aware and cautious of the fact that the five-day day-night affair can be tricky.

“Of course. Like there will be challenges in heaps. We haven’t played that before. I am pretty sure we will have solid, intense practice sessions. Lots of catching, batting, bowling and spending time at the ground under the lights with the pink ball.”
Rohit Sharma

“That all will happen. But of course, it is happening for the first time for us, so it says a lot. It is a big challenge, but we want to enjoy most importantly,” Rohit added.

Like many Indian cricketers, Rohit, too, has played with the pink ball at the domestic level, when the Duleep Trophy was made a day-night affair on experimental basis from 2016 till 2018.

Ahead of the Bangladesh series, Rohit had met the new BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly in Mumbai last month when the team management, along with Virat Kohli, was there to select the team for the home series against the neighbours.

According to Rohit, the only discussion he had with the former Indian captain was regarding the team.

“It was just about the selection issue because we were announcing the team that day for the T20I and Tests. The talks were regarding selection. And of course, I know him personally as well,” said Rohit.

“I congratulated him (Sourav Ganguly) for this opportunity, and I am sure he is going to do wonders in BCCI.”
Rohit Sharma

Like everyone till now, Rohit also failed to solve the MS Dhoni puzzle for the entire nation, but he did provide a solution.

The batsman said, “I have no idea, honestly. You know MS Dhoni has been going to so many events, why do people not ask him, ‘What is happening? Are you playing or not?’”

“Seriously I have no idea. If he hasn’t announced it means he is still playing. I guess.”
Rohit Sharma

Talking about Trusox, Rohit said that before becoming the brand ambassador, he has been using the product for two years.

“It actually started two years back I would say as I was using the product and when the opportunity came towards me to join hands with them. I was hearing a lot about quality of the product, stability, the durability and all sorts of things. So, I decided that I want to use the product and see what happens,” Rohit said.

According to Rohit he has used the product throughout the World Cup, through out the South Africa Test series and even before that as well.

“It allows me to just focus on the game, get ready for the game without thinking twice whether the product is good or not,” concluded Rohit.

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Published: 02 Nov 2019, 05:58 AM IST

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