Interview of Cricket Fans (ICF) – 35 — Rohit Sharma

Thank you so much for your participation in this interview, tell us your memories of watching Cricket growing up.

To be very honest, I was never a cricket lover until Rohit Sharma walked in. Hence all the memories I’ve of cricket is about hating it. I never really understood what was so interesting in watching a man running from one end and throwing the ball to the human standing right in front who hits it and starts running while rest players do nothing but stand at their places, except those near whom the ball gushes. That was so confusing for me to understand. But it was 2011 world cup finals that made me realise how important the game is for a large part of our society. I saw people rushing on the streets, dancing and yelling in happiness like maniacs and that was where I developed some respect for the sport.

Have you been fortunate enough to watch an international match live in a stadium? If yes, which match was going on at what venue?

Yes! I’ve been very unexpectedly fortunate to witness this game live on 20th October 2019. It was the 3rd Test, Day 2 of IND vs SA at JSCA, Ranchi, Jharkhand. Rarely any big matches are played here so I couldn’t let go of this opportunity. I bunked my college and travelled from Patna to Ranchi, almost 600 km up and down all alone to see this. I was even scolded badly by my family for this. That was really very daring of me but was worth it. The cherry on the cake was being able to witness my idol, Rohit Sharma scoring his double test ton on my stadium debut. I can never ever forget this day, after all, that was the closest I had been to him.

When was the first time you watched Rohit Sharma bat? And when was the first time you actually started following him and his career?

I came to know about Rohit Sharma in 2013 that too by an accident. I was new to Facebook and then a friend request popped in my notification. It was from some Rohit Sharma, Indian Opener batsman (as his bio stated). I googled to check if it was true and got very excited( Yeah I was dumb enough!). Later my elders told me about fake accounts like those but it was already late enough. My curiosity to know him more had got triggered by then and I started figuring out cricket on a serious note. 2014 onward I was completely into cricket and had turned into a passionate and loyal Rohit Sharma fan.

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 double tons are indeed as amazing as he is. I don’t have many memories of 209 scored in 2013 but when he scored 264, the fan in me was on cloud 264. The very next day in school I made sure that everyone knows what a beast Rohit is. Talking about 208 in Mohali in 2017 the memories are very dear to me. I knew it was a matchday and still sitting in the classroom not being able to watch the sport was tough. I sat the entire time crossing my fingers on my way back home hoping him to still be on the crease. I ran in my room, switched on the TV and took a breath of relief to see him with a 100+ already. The next few balls were a delight to watch. It was showering 6s and 4s. And my happiness doubled when I started getting numbers of calls to congratulate me as soon as he crossed the 200 mark. That was pure gold. I literally felt it to be my personal achievement. Pizza treats are mandatory for me whenever Ro scores like that.

5 centuries in 9 matches for India in the World Cup, that is a huge statement, isn’t it?

Yes, World Cup 2019 has been the best series for Rohit Sharma. It was really heartwarming to see him in such an amazing form but, unfortunately, luck didn’t favour us and that’s where our hearts ripped. But yeah he was fire throughout the series!

There is only format where he has failed to establish himself because of various reasons, what according to you is the reason why he hasn’t quite made a mark in Tests yet.

What I feel about this is that Rohit is the best suit for an opener. We’ve seen him as a middle-order batsman and an opener and have seen the difference he makes with it. Most of the time in tests he was playing down the line but recently when promoted up the order he has done wonders. He scored back to back centuries in the starting games followed by a double century. Had he got this opportunity earlier I’m sure he would have filled his bucket with milestones.

And now Rohit Sharma has been awarded Khel Ratna for his excellency in 2019 World Cup for India, your message to him.

Being a Rohit Sharma fan is the best thing that could ever happen to me. If he could read this I would like to congratulate him for the Khel Ratna, wish him luck for IPL2020 and would want him to know that we stan him for what he is as a person, what he is as a player comes next. He has been an inspiration for me and many others like me for so many years and we are so grateful for this. No matter what, we, his F̶a̶n̶s friends have got his back always. And yeah, I am looking forward to congratulating him for his next milestone in person. That would be a dream come true for him.

Did you get a chance to meet Rohit Sharma?

No, unfortunately, we haven’t met yet, but thanks to team Mumbai Indians I was able to exchange a few words over the video call with him. I was one of those lucky fans who got this opportunity to celebrate his birthday with him virtually. That was indeed the best day of my life. I had always heard from my friends who had met him that he was very warm-hearted, friendly, funny and made everyone around comfortable. He was exactly like that. Despite talking for the first time he didn’t let us feel like we were talking to a celebrity. He was so patient with the technical issues that occurred quite a few times, heard all of us, replied all our questions with great endurance and was so humble. You know it really feels appreciable to be acknowledged and treated as FRIEND by your idol. I’m sure, anyone who has met him or will meet him in future will agree to this. He is a gem of a person!

Thank You @Being_AB23 for this comment on my previous post on Twitter.

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