Kumar Sangakkara’s praise: Great job, well done

Rohit Sharma has to play more Tests: Sourav Ganguly

By Lokendra Pratap Sahi in Leeds
  • Published 7.07.19, 2:42 AM
  • Updated 7.07.19, 2:42 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Kumar Sangakkara Telegraph file picture

“Great job and well done, Rohit (Sharma)” was Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara’s reaction when The Telegraph sought comments on the India vice-captain surpassing his record of four hundreds in a single edition of the World Cup.

Sangakkara’s four had come in the 2015 World Cup, in Australia-New Zealand.

Asked if he was disappointed that his record had been bettered, Sangakkara replied: “No, not at all. (PoM) Rohit is a quality batsman.”

Speaking to this Reporter, also at Headingley, former India captain Sourav Ganguly (a champion opener in ODIs himself) said: “Amazing, yes... Times have changed, this generation bats with more freedom...

“I just hope Rohit has kept a hundred or two in the reserve, for the semi-final and, hopefully, the final as well.”

Sourav added: “Somebody of Rohit’s class has to play more Tests. The national selectors must rethink and give him the opportunities. He’s too good a batsman to be limited to ODIs and T20Is.”

Despite being around for 12 years, Rohit’s Test appearances only total 27. So, Sourav has a point.

Sourav’s take on how Rohit has taken batting to another level was interesting: “The responsibility of being the India vice-captain in white-ball cricket has been a factor...

Rohit Sharma celebrates his century during the ICC Cricket World Cup match between Bangladesh and India at Edgbaston in Birmingham, England, on July 2, 2019.
Rohit Sharma celebrates his century during the ICC Cricket World Cup match between Bangladesh and India at Edgbaston in Birmingham, England, on July 2, 2019. (AP)

“Also, I feel, captaining the Mumbai Indians so successfully has had some effect. Factors do come into play.”

Interacting with the Media, Rohit stated: “I don’t think of milestones and stay in the present, not the past... I’m not playing for records, but I’m here to score runs and lift the (World) Cup...

“We’re on a mission and that mission has not been accomplished...

“It’s tough staying in the present as there are so many who want runs to be scored and want India to win, and that’s constantly in your ears, but my family is around to distract me and help me remain in good space...

“I’m enjoying the beautiful weather in England...

“As for not converting the hundreds (into Daddy ones), I will if I am in a similar position in the semi-final...

“I’ve always believed that, once past the hundred mark, it’s not the bowler but the batsman’s own mistake which gets him out...

“In the match against Lanka, we wanted to tick all the boxes before the semi-final and were good in the chase.”

Rohit recalled buddy Yuvraj Singh’s observation, during the last IPL, that he’d come good “when it counted.”

Actually, Rohit has gone beyond “good.”

For the record, India defeated Lanka by seven wickets, with KL Rahul getting a hundred as well. Poor Angelo Mathews’s commendable hundred got forgotten. The toss had been won by Lanka.