Rohit Sharma, who scored his maiden double Test century, said he had no option but to make full use of the opportunity presented to him as an opener or else “a lot could have happened” as far as his stint in the longest format is concerned.
Since opening in Tests, the Mumbai batsmant has had scores of 176, 127 (in his first Test) and has already smashed a double to emulate Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag as players to score 200 across two formats.
“Kafi kuch hone wala thaa naahin toh kaafi kuch aap likh dete mere barein mein (a lot could have happened had I not performed and you guys (media) would have written a lot about me,” Rohit said at the day end press conference on Sunday at Ranchi.
“So, it was about making most of the opportunities I got. I knew I had to make full use of it, otherwise media would have written against me. Now I know everyone will write good things about me,” he added.
In four innings, Rohit has accumulated 529 runs to become only the fifth Indian opener to score 500-plus runs in a Test series.
“It was a good opportunity for me to open the batting. As I said during the Vizag Test, the communication between me and my team management was happening for a long time about opening the batting. So mentally, I was ready for it. I knew it could come at anytime.”
He was involved in a record 267-run fourth-wicket partnership with Ajinkya Rahane (115) was the duo staged a remarkable turnaround after India lost two early wickets.
“Speaking of this particular knock, I would say it was most challenging. I have not played much. I played only 30 Tests. In terms of what was thrown at me, I would definitely say it was probably the most challenging one,” he said.
Rohit himself acknowledged that he has a long way to go. “In Tests, it has it’s challenges. Having played only three Tests as an opener, I know I have long way to go. I am not reading too much into these three Tests. Of course, I will take a lot of positives but I am not reading too much into it.
“Opening the batting is a different challenge to batting at Nos 6-7. It’s just about how you prepare yourself, what you talk to yourself in your mind about what do you want to go out there and achieve.
“Playing the first ball of the match, compared to facing a delivery after 30-40 overs is a different ball game altogether. There’s nothing in particular that I’ve done in terms of technique.”
The 32-year-old is now eyeing to replicate the success overseas when the tour New Zealand next year.
“Wherever you play the new ball, you have to have some understanding of the basics of the game. Which ball you have to play and leave. In certain aspects of the game you have to be mindful of.
“I was allowing myself to take time rather than going after the ball straightway. It’s not a good idea with a new ball. You got to play with a little lower backlift. In overseas, of course, it’s a different ball game. That’s a challenge and I am awaiting.”