Interview of Cricket Fans (ICF) – 27 – Rohit Sharma
Welcome to this series of interviewing cricket fans. In this interview article, I will be having a chat with some of the passionate fans of Hitman and share what they feel like about their idol.
My first guest for this series is @Arey_Yaar
Thank you so much for your participation in this interview, tell us your memories of watching Cricket growing up.
My love for cricket began very early in my childhood. My dad was a huge cricket fan and he’d wake me up in the middle of the night to watch matches. He’d make me observe how all the great batsmen of that era batted – Sachin Tendulkar, Steve Waugh, Brian Lara and so on. Eventually, I grew up to fall in love with the game, especially Test cricket. The sport became a massive part of my life, it was a daily ritual followed religiously by everyone at home, including my mom. I also started playing cricket in my building, the only girl in a herd of boys. I will always regret not becoming a professional cricketer but I still breathe cricket every second!
Have you been fortunate enough to watch an international match live in a stadium? If yes, which match was going on at what venue?
Oh yes, I’ve been a regular stadium goer since the IPL started in 2008 but my earliest memory of an international cricket match was in 2011 – the World Cup quarter-final between India and Australia at Motera. My mom and I had randomly bought tickets way before we knew India would be playing at that venue. It was probably one of the best international matches I’ve seen live!
When was the first time you watched Rohit Sharma bat?
2007/08 – the T20 World Cup followed by the CB Series in Australia. His 66 in the 1st final really helped Sachin change gears and win the match for India.
Rohit Sharma’s batting career started off really well as he was a part of the 2007 World T20 squad and performed well in South Africa, then he went to Australia in 2008 and performed well there too, but then he just couldn’t make it to the squad for the 2011 World Cup, must have been tough for him.
Well yeah, probably why that image of him in the dressing room when India lost the 2019 World Cup semi-final hurts so much. He deserved this one after missing out on a home World Cup!
And his batting woes didn’t end there, it was that horrible 2012 series in Sri Lanka too where he just couldn’t score more than single digits.
I think a lot of it had to do with where he batted in the order. He’s not someone who should be burdened in the middle order or towards the end. He needs freedom!
Then came the masterstroke of MS Dhoni where he promoted him to the opening spot, rest is history as they say.
That was Rohit Sharma 2.0. There hasn’t been a more life-changing masterstroke in the history of Indian cricket, I think.
Rohit Sharma and double centuries are a match made in heaven. Share us your memories of each of the 200 that he scored in ODI’s.
His first 200 came on the eve of Diwali in 2013 and I remember stalling my preparations and watching him bat. I kept telling my mom I’d get to work once he reaches 100 but then I didn’t get up till he got out.
The second 200 against Sri Lanka was unbelievable. I remember calling up my friends and telling them “aaj to 300 pakka hai boss”.
By the time he got to the 3rd one, it really wasn’t surprising anymore. He had exceeded his own expectations.
5 centuries in 9 matches for India in the World Cup, that is a huge statement.
Now I think nobody can dare point a finger at his potential and talent on pitches outside the subcontinent!
There is only one format where he has failed to establish himself because of various reasons, what according to you is the reason?
Basically, Rohit has been a late bloomer even in the shorter formats. It took him some time and some adjustments to his game before he started dominating. I feel in a couple of years time, he’ll get there in Test cricket, provided he gets the rope that he got in ODIs.
Have you got the opportunity to meet him?
I’ve met him thrice so far: The first time was when I won a competition at Smaaaash Mumbai and got to meet him as a reward. The second time was when I actually gatecrashed his wedding (not many people know about this). The third time was recently in 2018 when India was playing a T20I series in Australia and I had specifically planned my holiday to watch the match and meet him. I found out where the Indian team was staying, waited for around 2 hours in the hotel lobby and finally ran towards him after spotting him going for the team meeting.
And now Rohit Sharma has been awarded Khel Ratna for his excellency in 2019 World Cup for India, your message to him.
A. Love watching you bat. Keep making India proud!