Rohit Sharma over Virat Kohli for India's greatest ever: Junaid Khan
“Scoring 264 in an ODI, making 2 more double hundreds is a task in itself. When you do it time and again, it means you have the quality," Junaid said.
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Indian players showcased exceptional form throughout the 2023 World Cup, with standout performances leading them to the final against Australia. Despite dominating victories over every opponent leading up to the final, India's dream of clinching the trophy was dashed as they conceded the title by six wickets and despite being favored contenders, India fell short in their quest for the championship.
The senior batters Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli were pivotal to India's impressive run in the tournament. Kohli scored three centuries, breaking Sachin Tendulkar's longstanding record for the most centuries in ODI cricket, becoming the first player to score 50 centuries in the format.
He also surpassed Tendulkar's record for the most runs in a single World Cup campaign, amassing a remarkable 765 runs in 11 matches. Rohit contributed with one century and finished as the tournament's second-highest run-scorer with 597 runs in as many matches at a strike rate of 125.94. His contributions were often considered the main reason behind India's victories.
Renowned Pakistani fast bowler Junaid Khan asserted that Rohit deserves to be hailed as India's greatest batter, surpassing even the likes of Kohli and Tendulkar.
“According to me, it’s Rohit Sharma. The way he bats, he has all kinds of shots in his book. That’s why he is called the Hitman," said Junaid on the Nadir Ali Podcast.
Scoring 264 in an ODI, and making two more double-hundreds is a task in itself: Junaid
Junaid highlighted Rohit's remarkable achievements, including the record for the most sixes for India in ODI cricket and being the sole player to score three double centuries in men's ODIs. Notably, Rohit's 264 against Sri Lanka in 2014 remains the highest-ever score in ODI cricket. During the 2023 World Cup, he also surpassed the record for the most sixes in international cricket.
“Scoring 264 in an ODI, making 2 more double hundreds is a task in itself. When you do it time and again, it means you have the quality. He has hit the most sixes as well for India. So, my vote is with Rohit,” stated Junaid, who represented Pakistan in 22 Test matches, 76 ODIs, and nine T20Is between 2011 and 2019.