Rohit Sharma's twin tons as an opener helped India register a 203-run win against South Africa in Vizag. (Photo Credit: Twitter)
Before the Vizag Test, there were apprehensions of Rohit Sharma being an opener in the Test format. After the end of the match, the mood regarding Rohit is totally different. The intimidation factor at the top of the Indian cricket team batting, which has been missing ever since the retirement of Virender Sehwag, has now been rekindled thanks to Rohit. His century in both innings, only the sixth Indian to achieve the feat, played a massive role in India's 203-run win against South Africa in the Vizag Test. In the first innings, he set up the base with Mayank Agarwal as the duo stitched a 317-run stand for the opening wicket. In the second innings, he blew South Africa away with his aggression.
After getting the Man of the Match award, Rohit said the Indian cricket team expected him to play in a certain way which was to mix caution with aggression. "My job here is to play in a certain manner, that's what they expect me. And I'm going to try to do that. It's my game to mix caution with aggression. Everything depends on the situation you're batting in. Couple of years ago it was communicated to me that I might open someday. Even in nets I used to practice with the new ball. Just wanted to go out there and do what I do best. Great opportunity for me at the top," Rohit said.
This was a record-breaking Test for Rohit. His 317-run stand with Agarwal was the best partnership in Tests between India and Australia. His century in each innings put him in a list which features Vijay Hazare, Sunil Gavaskar, Rahul Dravid, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane. His big-hitting was in full prowess, smashing a total of 13 sixes in the match. His tally broke the record for the most sixes by an Indian in a Test while also breaking Wasim Akram's record of most sixes in a match with 12. However, Rohit chose not to focus on the records.
"There are lot of things in Test which I'm not aware of in terms of records. Focus was to have fun and put team in a good position. Had to try and play some shots. May come off and may not come off. Bowlers are pretty smart these days. I back myself and I guess fortune favours the brave," Rohit said.
With India 1-0 up, the focus now shifts to the second Test match that will take place at the Maharashtra Cricket Association in Pune on October 10.