Rohit Sharma's first reaction after unbeaten Team India enters World Cup semis | Cricket - Hindustan Times

'When we started off in Chennai...': Rohit Sharma's first reaction after unbeaten Team India enters World Cup semis

By, New Delhi
Nov 03, 2023 07:05 AM IST

Rohit Sharma also lauded two star performers of the Indian team after India crushed Sri Lanka to enter the World Cup semi-finals.

Extending their unbeaten run to seven games at the grandest stage of them all, Rohit Sharma's Team India crushed Sri Lanka in match No.33 of the ICC World Cup 2023 by 302 runs to enter the semi-finals. Opener Shubman Gill, former skipper Virat Kohli and premier batter Shreyas Iyer propelled Rohit's men to a gigantic total against Sri Lanka in the rematch of the 2011 final at the Wankhede Stadium.

India's Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah and teammates celebrate after the World Cup match(REUTERS)
India's Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah and teammates celebrate after the World Cup match(REUTERS)

Triggering a batting collapse of the 1996 champions, pacers Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj produced a devastating display of fast bowling as Sri Lanka folded for just 55 runs in 19.4 overs. With the massive win over the former champions, India not only extended its unbeaten run but the ICC World Cup 2023 hosts also became the first team to enter the semi-final stage of the showpiece event.

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A lot of individuals have…’

Speaking at the post-match presentation, Rohit was pleased to see India ‘officially’ qualifying for the business end of the ICC tournament. Two-time champions India last won the 50-over spectacle when the Asian giants were the hosts of the One Day International (ODI) World Cup back in 2011. “Very happy knowing that we have officially qualified now. Been a good effort from the squad, when we started off in Chennai. This was our goal, to qualify first and then obviously to be in the semis and the finals. The way we approached these 7 games, it was quite clinical. Everyone put in the effort and a lot of individuals have put their hand up,” Rohit said.

‘Shreyas showed that he is…’

The veteran India opener was all praise for Iyer, who was under the pump for his batting failure against England in Lucknow. Iyer played a sublime knock of 82 off 56 balls to help India post 357-8 in 50 overs against Sri Lanka at Mumbai. “Shreyas is a very strong (in his mind) lad and he went there and did what he is exactly known for and that is what we expect from him. Shreyas showed that he is ready to take the challenge that is in front of him,” Rohit added.

'Siraj is a quality bowler'

The 36-year-old also gave pacer Mohammed Siraj a special mention for picking up three crucial wickets in his fiery spell against Sri Lanka at Mumbai. “Siraj is a quality bowler and if he does that with new ball things look different for us. He has got a lot of skills when he is operating with the new ball," Rohit noted.

Rohit on taking Proteas challenge at World Cup

An already-qualified India will next meet South Africa in the round-robin phase of the ICC World Cup. While India have secured wins in seven matches, the Proteas are second on the points table with six wins and one defeat. “They (South Africa) are playing some good cricket, and so are we. It's going to be a great spectacle for the people out there and people of Kolkata are going to enjoy that game,” Rohit concluded.

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