Why Rohit Sharma has not been as successful in Tests as in ODIs, T20Is? David Gower explains
There are only a few bigger names in limited-overs cricket at the moment than India vice-captain Rohit Sharma. Ever since Rohit has been promoted to the top of the batting order in 2013, he has been an absolute beast. Roihit has scored three double centuries in ODIs, the most by any player. Rohit has also scored four T20I hundreds, the most by any player. Rohit scored five centuries in World Cup 2019, the most by any player in a single edition of a World Cup. Rohit is also the 2nd-highest run-scorer in T20Is, only next to Virat Kohli. But despite such a sensational record in limited-overs cricket, the batsman has not been able to find the same level of success in Test cricket.
Don’t get us wrong, Rohit has been great in Test cricket as well. He has scored 6 tons in 32 games and has scored 2,141 runs in the longest format. But for a player of his stature, by this time in his career, many fans would expect him to have played more Tests and scripted more records.
Former England captain David Gower was asked by Cricket.com whether he feels surprised by the fact that Rohit has not been able to find that level of success in Test cricket. In his response, Gower said: “I’m not startled, far from it. There are loads of players with immense talent and it’s a very fine line sometimes. I can name you a dozen players pretty quickly probably who are very good at white-ball cricket, hopeless at red-ball cricket.
“It doesn’t mean they’re not talented, it doesn’t mean they’re not gifted in a certain way. For instance, we have one in England – Jason Roy, who is a very, very talented player. A vital part of England’s World Cup win last year, opens the innings in white-ball cricket and gets hundreds. I had a hope that he might be able to learn how to control himself better at Test match level and make runs. All that hope looks a bit distant now because of what happened in the Ashes.”
He further added: “That’s why I think I, and most players current and past, would say that the ultimate test is Test match cricket because it exposes people to different problems. You can get away with a lot in white-ball cricket. You can be multi-talented, you can be a great player to watch, you can hit the ball miles in white-ball cricket, but I’m afraid sometimes people are exposed when it comes to stepping up and I always call it stepping up to Test match cricket.”
Gower further said: “Those who make runs in all formats, those are the ones you have to admire most. It doesn’t mean you can’t admire the quality of people for instance who become the most valuable players in IPL or who win you World Cups in 50-overs or win you World Cups in T20. They’ve all got merits, they’ve all got skills, they’ve all got things that entertain the public which is all part of the business as well. This is a business which is an entertainment and it needs people to watch, be it on television or at the ground. So, there is space for everyone. But people that I respect most of all are people who can do it in any format but especially in Test match cricket.”