June 8, 2012

Indian cricket

Has Rohit Sharma lost his way?

Deepika Ravi
Rohit Sharma was bowled by Delorn Johnson, West Indies A v India A, 1st unofficial Test, Barbados, 2nd day, June 3, 2012
Rohit Sharma has had his opportunities, but has failed to cash in on them  © West Indies Cricket Board
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During the 2007-08 ODI series in Australia, India had unearthed an exciting young player. Rohit Sharma had come good during the series. At the end of the series, he was touted by many as the heir to Sachin Tendulkar.

Close to almost five years later, watching the 25-year-old play, I wonder: what went wrong? One of Australia's best and most formidable captains, Ian Chappell had described Rohit as the next best thing to happen to Indian cricket. To begin with, here was a batsman with a really good technique. Next up, you noticed, amid the many sloggers, a man with crisp drives and solid punches. Then came his fielding: energetic, enthusiastic and near perfect. A bonus perhaps was his really useful offspin. All in all, here was the complete package.

But five years down the line, Rohit Sharma hasn't played a single Test, is not a permanent fixture in the ODI playing XI and is, if he is indeed picked, a floater in the batting order. Plenty of opportunities have come his, more often than not he has failed to cash in on them. The accusations levelled against him are being irresponsible, poor running, and throwing his wicket away in tight circumstances. If Rohit takes a reality check he will probably see himself going nowhere.

I agree I've been a little too harsh on him, for he has had his moments of sheer brilliance. Right up from his debut during the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup through the Australia ODI series, right down to his recent century in the IPL, each and every one of those rare innings were gems, characterised by gorgeous shots. His shortcoming, however, lies in his inability to do it time and again, something the other batsman in his league (the likes of Virat Kohli) do, day in, day out. Far too many chances have been given away and in all probability they will dwindle. One of my personal favourites, an incredible talent, Rohit Sharma must do all it takes to keep himself from going off the radar.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Anonymous on (July 4, 2012, 16:36 GMT)

Dont bash Rohit Sharma. He has done well enough. His innings in IPL where he got a hundred was sublime - the fast paced overseas bowlers were taken to the cleaners more like what Yuvi does. It left the commentators of game wondering.

Posted by Subash Kavalloor on (June 29, 2012, 9:34 GMT)

Rohit is a great talent. Only thing when he gets a chance he should make use of it. Whenever he reaches a 90 he should think he is playing for self and score a Century. Once this is done, everything will become easier for him. Hope he has more luck next time.

Posted by Nitin on (June 27, 2012, 13:08 GMT)

See the performance of Indian players in the last two year i.e. from 2010 to till date (ODI): Sehwag avg is 41, Rohit avg is 41, Raina 34 , Jadeja 27, Yuvi 41, Y Pathan 31, Gambhir 45. I hope everyone get the point who is consistent and who is not. Rohit has been performing very consistency in the last 2-3 years better than his earlier years. So this is the right time to give him chance in test team too.

Posted by Arup on (June 18, 2012, 15:57 GMT)

Rohit is the most talented, yet frustrating to watch individuals India have ever produced. He oozes talent, and I would go as far as to say he is more talented than Kohli, but why is he nowhere near the Kohli we know and love now? Simple - Kohli works tremendously hard, and has a fantastic attitude. Rohit, can sometimes be lazy and big headed. He is still the future of Indian cricket. I can see him at 4 and Kohli at 5, but he needs to be performing for India in all forms, and not just turning up for Mumbai Indians in the IPL. The innings he played against KKR this year, just showed the world how immensely talented he is, but why cannot he do that on a regular basis? He does however look fitter and stronger so let's see if he has finally turned a corner

Posted by paritosh mishra on (June 17, 2012, 8:22 GMT)

rohit no doubt gotta have matured skills as of other cricketing giants sachin, dravid, etc.he has all kind of shots as legends would explain but he lacks temperamement.we all are well known of fact that temperament is more important than skills. MS dhoni proved it by all values. raina too is irresponsible one.rohit might gain such values from test matches as no luck factor is required there.. purely a skillful version.he is a failure in ODI.one more thing i would like to quote here that his shot selection is not good and he executes his shots a bit late esp. on the spinners and often prone to LBWs.should have a fast hand like kohli does.its about his reflexes.he has to curb on with his temperament to cement himself in the india squad

Posted by Anand on (June 14, 2012, 17:51 GMT)

The best way to judge Rohit is to give him frequent chance in tests which he havent got yet. Many times a player looks avg in domestic or any other level. But shines strongly at higher international level. Infact he keep something reserved at international level. So many examples....Sir Garfield Sobers, Virendra Sehewag, Ravi Shatri, Kevin Peterson etc etc..... Sehewag was questioned on his debue at SA. But he sparked like nothing. Even Dhoni himself. He gave his highest performance at international level only. So lets try Rohit in tests. All critics, thoughts are coming after observing him last 5 years. So friends let judge him at tests also. New Zeland series should be perfect judgement for the players like Rohit. If he performs, well India will get a fantastic player. If he fails , lets go for other option......

Posted by Balaji Krishnamurthy on (June 13, 2012, 1:19 GMT)

He seems to be finally making the commitment. But he needs to do a lot more. He needs to score big, real big and make it count. He also needs to seriously work on his body.

Posted by ali bajan on (June 13, 2012, 1:14 GMT)

oh and one more thing..

it is very uneducated and uninformed to comment about someone's ODI average without considering thier batting position ...

if one was to compare the averages of ALL batting positions of ALL players combined ...

One would find that Numbers 1-3 are the only postions where it is possible to average higer than 40...

Chanderpaul and Bevan are posibly the best ODI bastmen ever becasue they have high averages batting 5-8 .... at least 10 runs higher than the average for the batting position...

Posted by jay T on (June 12, 2012, 20:35 GMT)

Rohit is exceptionally talented but has wasted lots of opportunities especially at international level. He reminds me of Vinod Kambli, another exceptional bombay batsman who lost his way after super start to his international career. Rohit has had his moments, he has been at big stage for close to 5 years now and played almost 80/100 ODI's, no mean accomplishment, yet we see him as a new comer. I think his time has come and gone although I would love to see him do well for India. Excellent article. This is a make or break year for Rohit, many youngsters are knocking on the door and chances need to be given to them, not 80 but may be 10 ODI's for new kids showing good prospects (e.g. Unmukt).

Posted by hunk k surat on (June 12, 2012, 16:02 GMT)

I Agree that Rohit has been over criticized at times. I mean when you look at mediocre players like Raina, Jadeja (he is the worst of all players, bowls a but, bats only against dibly dobly bowlers and very good fielder) and Yusuf. Rohit, does at times gives away his wicket. He needs to put a price on his wicket. He has positive attitude, great talent but I think lacks consistency. He can only gain that from being a constant in Indian team. I think he is a great player needs some discipline and assurance. This is little out of the context here but for allrounder selectors must reconsider Irfan pathan. He is as bad bowlers as is Jadeja but way better batsmen than him. Can play quicks and spin equally well.

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