India vs South Africa: Virat Kohli ready to give Rohit Sharma ‘time and space’ as a Test opener
Prior to the Test series, Rohit got a duck in the warm-up match.
Updated - Oct 1, 2019 12:32 pm
Though Rohit Sharma is a fulcrum of India’s limited-overs teams, his position in the Test setup has always been a debatable one. The Mumbai batter’s numbers in red-ball cricket at home are stupendous, but it’s his batting in trying overseas conditions that has brought him under the scanner a number of times. He last played Test cricket in December 2018 versus Australia at the MCG.
The 32-year-old is now set to undergo a massive change through which he can try to revive his Test career. The right hander, in all likelihood, is set to open the batting alongside Mayank Agarwal in the upcoming three-match Test series versus South Africa. He got out for a duck in the warm-up match in Vizianagaram owing to which the focus has shifted to him more ahead of the first Test.
Virat Kohli wants to show patience with Rohit Sharma
In the meantime, Virat Kohli, the Indian skipper said that the team management is ready to show patience with Rohit, giving him time and space to settle into the scheme of things. “We are in no hurry with Rohit Sharma as opener. He will be given time and space to find his rhythm and the way he wants to play at the top,” Kohli was quoted as saying at the pre-match press conference.
The opening game is scheduled to get underway on Wednesday, October 2 in Visakhapatnam. Pune and Ranchi are the other two venues for the series. Prior to this, the Men in Blue drew the three-match T20I series 1-1. After winning in Mohali, India lost at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore.
As far as Rohit is concerned, he was a part of the Test team in the tour of the West Indies as well. But he had to warm the benches. KL Rahul played as the opener in the series and he couldn’t find his feet by any means. The Karnataka batsman has now been dropped for the fixtures versus the Proteas and he is busy plying his trade in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy.
Back in 2013, Rohit’s ODI and T20I careers took a turn after he started opening the batting. It remains to be seen how he adjusts to playing the new ball, which is expected to jag around, making it tough for the batters, in white-clothing cricket.