There is no doubt that Rohit Sharma is one of the finest white-ball players the game of cricket has ever seen. His superior timing, excellent hand-eye coordination and ability to score big daddy hundreds make him a unique batter.
Over the years, Rohit has grown his game in the longest format as well to become a regular Test opener. But what exactly Rohit did in the past few years that helped him excel in the red-ball format? Well, former India opening batsman Aakash Chopra has the answer. In his column for ESPNCricinfo, Chopra has explained how the Mumbaikar cracked the opening code in Test matches.
The cricketer-turned-commentator reckoned that Rohit has made some changes to his technique, like improving his front-foot stride and keeping his hands closer to the body. Chopra felt Rohit’s defence has become strong, which has taken his game to the next level.
“Since he (Rohit Sharma) started opening in Tests, there has been a change in his batting. The front-foot stride has become a little longer, and the hands are staying closer to the body. Though he didn’t get a big score in the World Test Championship final, he made a sincere effort to modify his game to suit the conditions in both innings. Even while the front-foot stride was significantly longer, he didn’t look to play through the line or on the up. He defended patiently off the front foot, waiting for the ball to be really full or short, and then he cashed in,” said Chopra.
Chopra gave examples of Rohit’s recent innings in Chennai and Ahmedabad, proving how some technical changes have improved his batting.
“The WTC final wasn’t an isolated incident illustrating the difference in Sharma’s approach in Tests. His century in Chennai and half-century in Ahmedabad, against England earlier this year, and his double-century in Ranchi against South Africa in October 2019 showed those patterns,” the 43-year-old added.
In 39 Tests, Rohit has managed to score 2679 runs at an impressive average of 46.2 with seven hundreds and 12 half-centuries.