Continuing his golden run, Rohit Sharma added more trophies to his cabinet after finishing the one-day series with a match-winning performance in the seventh game on Saturday. After helping India win their first full one-day series against Australia at home, the talk was all about his double hundred.
The opening batsman, who scored 209 off 156 balls to win the Man-of-the-Match and Man-of-the-Series awards, said the only thing in his mind was to get his team to a big total.
"I was not thinking that I have to get to 200, the only thing on my mind was that I have to play a big knock because we have seen that even 360 has not been a safe total in the series," said Rohit.
It was only when he crossed 180 did the thought of going for 200 occur to him.
On the mind
"When I was on 183-184, it came to my mind. I also got the deliveries in my range (in that period) which allowed me to play the big shots. It was important to maintain my shape (while executing the strokes) and everything fell into place," said Rohit, only the third batsman to score a double hundred in ODIs.
During the course of the innings, he broke the record for sixes too, but he wasn't counting. "I didn't know how many sixes I hit. Ravi Shastri later told me that I hit 16."
Most importantly, the performance has probably helped seal his Test spot in the coming series against West Indies starting on November 6. "I have been waiting for it for six years and if it happens I would be the happiest person in the world."
His success in the one-dayers has come as an opener, but for the Tests, Sharma would like to stick to the middle-order. "I have been selected as a middle-order batsman and I will like to play there."
He has arrived
Rohit's exploits may convince experts of his delayed arrival, but there is a larger goal.
"After being snubbed for the 2011 World Cup, Rohit was distraught. He came to me and promised that he will play the 2015 World Cup. He said that will be his goal," his coach Dinesh Lad said.
"Right now, the way he is playing, he must walk into the Test team. After all, he has been playing proper cricket shots and that is what Tests need."