Rohit Sharma turned a new leaf on Wednesday as he not only scored a century in his first innings as a Test opener to put India in the driver’s seat at the end of the opening day of the first Test against South Africa but also equalled Don Bradman’s record of having a batting average of 98.22 at home.
While Bradman had an average of 98.22 after 50 innings at home with 4322 runs in his kitty, Rohit has 884 runs after 15 innings with the same average.
Speaking at the end of the day’s play, Rohit insisted that his plan was to trust his game and abilities and that’s what he was able to achieve as he remained unbeaten on 115 at stumps on the opening day.
“I wanted to take the opportunity and that’s why I made the management aware of it. I am grateful to them for providing me with the opportunity and I am happy I could score runs,” Rohit told reporters.
Talking about his batting plans in the initial overs, the 32-year-old said he wanted to see off the new ball and then cash in from thereafter.
“I was very clear in my mind what I wanted to do. The new ball will always do a bit in the initial overs — whether it’s red ball or white.
“I have played cricket in India for a long time now and that’s why I was aware of the conditions and knew that once you get past the first 10 overs, it becomes difficult to get wickets. And it becomes easier to score runs.
“This was my plan to tackle the new ball and then stick to what I had planned. Backing myself and my game was most important for me because it was all I had in my mind,” he added.
Posting a picture of the opener, leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal wrote: “Real G.O.A.T”. Former India spinner Harbhajan Singh tweeted: “Wah @ImRo45 Brilliant 100.. dress blue ho ya white koi fark nahi padta.. Rohit HiT hai bhai (Brilliant ton by Rohit, it doesn’t matter whether he is in the ODI or Test team. He is a hit).”
ICC also acknowledged Rohit’s superb knock and said: “The HITMAN is back with a bang. Rohit Sharma gets his first Test ton as an opener!”
Former India opener and commentator Aakash Chopra also praised Rohit and tweeted: “4th Test Century. 1st as an opener. Rohit has grabbed the opportunity with both hands. Well played.”