Team India has had some of the greatest batters in white-ball cricket including the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli but as a finisher, none better than legendary skipper MS Dhoni. Dhoni, who was known to take the game deep, had an ice-cool temperament as he finished several white-ball games for India as well as in the IPL for Chennai Super Kings and Rising Pune Supergiant.
However, for Virat Kohli, Dhoni wasn’t his worst nightmare as a bowling captain at death. In a freewheeling chat on his YouTube channel, veteran Indian off-spinner R Ashwin revealed that Kohli’s worst nightmare was Rohit Sharma, who went into overdrive mode when he batted in the death overs.
“5-6 years back, Virat Kohli and I had a discussion while Rohit was batting. I don’t remember which match it was. Seeing Rohit bat, I was thinking, ‘Where do you even bowl to him?’”
“If Rohit is set after 15-20 overs, you wouldn’t know where to bowl him. Virat asked me, ‘Do you know who is a captain’s nightmare at the death?’ I asked ‘Is it (MS) Dhoni?’,” he added.
“Kohli was like, ‘No, it is Rohit. When I asked him why, he said you won’t know where to bowl’. If Rohit Sharma is batting at the end of the 16th over in a T20, where will you bowl? He has got all the shots in the book and once he played an extraordinary knock in Chinnaswamy Stadium that Kohli can never forget, it seems,” Ashwin further said.
Since 2013, Rohit has opened the innings for India in white-ball cricket and has gone on to become one of the better openers in the world. And as everyone is witness to, when Rohit plays long, he plays really long as his three double hundreds in ODI cricket evidently say. Team India will hope that Rohit can play a few more of such innings in the next couple of months with the Men in Blue set to face Australia in a three-match ODI series, followed by the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023.
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