‘4th slowest to 2,000 runs, but 2nd fastest to 10,000’ – AB de Villiers praises ‘fighter’ Rohit Sharma

Image Source : GETTY Rohit Sharma and AB de Villiers during ICC Champions Trophy match in 2013

Rohit Sharma’s impressive run of form in the ongoing Asia Cup 2023 has attracted praise from the legendary South African cricketer AB de Villiers. Rohit is India’s leading run-getter in the tournament with 195 runs in just four innings with the help of three consecutive fifties. 

The Indian captain has been on a run for breaking and creating major achievements throughout the tournament. He remains India’s leading run-getter in the tournament among active cricketers and also holds the record for most sixes. In India’s last Super 4 game against Sri Lanka, he completed 10,000 runs to enter into history books and also became the second fastest cricketer in the world to reach the milestone.

However, Rohit was not up to his best in the early years of his career and missed the team for the ICC World Cup in 2011 despite making a debut in 2007. But Rohit has consistently scored runs in the last few years to establish himself as one of the best batters of all time and arguably the finish opener in white-ball cricket. AB praised Rohit’s fighting spirit ahead of India’s Super 4 match against Bangladesh on Friday and said the Indian skipper never backed down from a fight with anyone. 

“Rohit was fourth slowest to 2,000 runs, but the second fastest to 10,000. How’s that for a comeback? I have a lot of respect for him,” AB said on his YouTube channel on Friday. “The first time I watched him play, I thought this guy has got something special to offer. What I like most about him – from a very young age, he’s always had a fighting spirit. He would not back down to anyone. I think of a Test match in Durban where he just wouldn’t stand back to Dale Steyn or Morne Morkel or any of our fast bowlers. He would make eye contact. If anyone chirped him, he would be right in their face, chest out. I always liked that.”

Former South African big hitter also talked about Rohit’s impressive partnership with Shubman Gill in ODIs. The duo completed a combined 1000 runs in ODIs during the Sri Lanka game and became the fastest Indian pair to reach the milestone. 

“Very interestingly, he (Rohit) has had an incredible partnership with Shubman Gill. Two fighters at the crease is always a dangerous thing for the opposition. As an opening pair, they are averaging 87-odd (95) with a strike rate of 110. If they can do that for India in the World Cup,” de Villiers added.

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