6 reasons why Rohit Sharma is a great ODI batsman of this generation
- The article deep dives into Rohit Sharma's One Day International performances analyzing every aspect of his ODI career
Hitman, Maggie Man, Mr Talented, Flat Track Bully, etc., these are the names you generally associate for the swashbuckling opener from India, Rohit Sharma.
For some, he is the most inconsistent player in the Indian line-up; for some, he is a paradigm of laziness; for some, he is the most beautiful player to watch; and for some, he is the man of big scores.
Perception may say many things, but unless and until the perception is backed by facts, the perception makes no sense.
Rohit Sharma's career has been a tale of two halves; one before 2013, where he mostly batted in the middle and lower middle order, and other after 2013, where is started opening for India.
It won't be fair if we club the analysis together, because the impact is tremendously different in both the cases, hence, the analysis would first start with his pre-2013 stage, and then move on to post-2013 stage under different scenarios.
The 19-year-old talented batsman from India started his ODI career against Ireland in 2007. He did not get a chance to bat as India were chasing a meagre 171 to win.
Initially, with the top order comprising of Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni, Rohit Sharma had to contain playing in the lower order.
In the first phase of his career, he scored 1978 runs from 81 innings at an average of 30.43 and a strike rate of 77.93. His consistency was not as bad as he scored valuable innings in almost 30 innings out of 81.
However, he didn't have too many big scores to compensate the average. His strike rate too was way below average in this time period. Analyzing it further, his first century came after 42 matches in 2010 when he scored a match-winning 114 of 119 balls against Zimbabwe.
Before that, he had scored 743 runs from 39 innings at an average of 25.6 and a strike rate of 72.6. He was also dropped from the side in this time period.
After his first century, it looked as if Rohit would take the world by storm, but things didn't go well for him, and he was dropped from the squad again following a string of low scores.
Recalled after the World Cup 2011, he looked promising again, as he got successive man of the series awards against West Indies. However, his consistency once again took a dip as he failed continuously in 6 odd matches.
Concluding his performance before 2013, he was not the Rohit Sharma that we know now. There could be various reasons for his failure in his initial 80 odd matches, but the main reason which almost everyone would agree is his batting order, which didn't suit his style of play.
Anyway, moving on to his post-2013 performance.