Rohit Sharma reveals how MS Dhoni asked him to open in the 2013 Champions Trophy

Rohit Sharma reveals how MS Dhoni asked him to open in the 2013 Champions Trophy

Rohit has over 6,000 ODI runs as an opening batsman

Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni
Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni. (Photo Source: ISHARA S. KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)

Rohit Sharma is presently a fulcrum of the Indian top-order, especially in limited-overs cricket. He is taking part in the 2019 World Cup in England and Wales and is one of the batsmen to watch out for. However, he started his career as a middle-order batsman and couldn’t quite show enough consistency. Subsequently, the then youngster was in and out of the national team.

But fortunes turned in his favour in the 2013 Champions Trophy in England that the Men in Blue won, defeating the hosts in a closely-fought Final. He went on to score 177 runs in the tournament at an average of 35.40 with a couple of half-centuries to his name. During the 50-overs extravaganza, Rohit was asked to open and the thought of it made him extremely nervous.

Recently, Rohit featured in a talk-show ‘Breakfast with Champions’, hosted by popular presenter Gaurav Kapur, and revealed how MS Dhoni, the then Indian captain, asked him to open from the match against South Africa. At that point in time, Sharma didn’t have much experience of batting against the new ball.

I didn’t care about who the opposition was, says Rohit

“Champions Trophy is a long tournament and suddenly MS told me to open from the first match. I told OK and let’s see how things pan out. Even though he told and I agreed, I went into the room and wondered if I had made a blunder, if my words would backfire or not,” Rohit was quoted as saying.

“I didn’t want to know about the opposition and whom we are playing against. As the players get an idea about whether he’s playing or not. You get to know about it psychologically. So I was preparing myself from the prospect of not playing and what shall I do the whole day. Shall I train or something else. Therefore, I didn’t care about who the opposition was,” he added.

As far as his records as an opener is concerned, Rohit has notched 6,043 runs in 122 ODI matches at an average of 56.47 with as many as 20 centuries. His top score of 264 against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata also came as an opening batsman.