India’s emphatic 151-run win over England in the second Test at Lord’s has raised the bar for the Men in Blue who are keen on ending a 14-year wait of winning a Test series in the cradle of cricket.
While everyone contributed to India’s stellar performance, it was Rohit Sharma’s solid 83 in the first innings which impressed legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar the most.
Rohit’s fine knock looked like a perfect foundation for a Test hundred, before James Anderson produced a beautiful reverse swing to get him out. His opening partner K L Rahul too impressed all with a classy 126 in the same innings.
Speaking on the Sony Sports Network, Gavaskar said missing a hundred must be painful for the stylish Mumbai batsman but it definitely is not the end of the world for him. Gavaskar said that Rohit Sharma is in top form and it is just a matter of time before he scores his first Test century abroad.
Gavaskar said he liked the way Rohit applied himself. “He (Rohit) played himself in during the first hour of play to erase any uncertainties about the pitch and gave India a cracking start,” said the little master.
“In a five-day Test match, no one has an idea as to how the pitch will behave on the first day – things like whether there is life on this pitch, will the ball bounce more? For that, you need some time and the adjustment Rohit Sharma showed in the first innings, how to do it. He did it brilliantly – what shots to play and what not. Just see how many balls he left, some of them close to the off stump. This adjustment is mental and that is what Rohit accomplished,” Gavaskar said.
Gavaskar said he can understand Rohit’s disappointment of not reaching a hundred at Lord’s, but “if he continues to play the way he does, he will only make a big contribution for India”.
Gavaskar said that Rohit is the kind of player who can score 70-80 runs consistently. “What else does a captain need? Yes, he would be disappointed not scoring a century, but getting a century at Lords isn’t everything,” said Gavaskar, who never got a century at Lord’s during his playing days.
“You score a century at Trent Bridge, or Leeds… if you score a century for India in whichever part of the world, that is what is important. And the way he is batting, the time he has and the position in which he gets himself in, it feels as if a century is just around the corner.”