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Rohit Sharma aims to continue be a nightmare for Sri Lanka in ODI cricket series

Rohit Sharma has always done well against Sri Lanka in international cricket. The India vice-captain is aiming to maintain the record in the five-ODI series starting on Sunday

india vs sri lanka 2017 Updated: Aug 16, 2017 18:06 IST
Sanjjeev K Samyal
India vs Sri Lanka,Rohit Sharma,Indian Cricket Team
Rohit Sharma, India vice-captain, has a brilliant record against Sri Lanka in international cricket.(AP)

No one knows how to deflate the Sri Lankans more than Rohit Sharma. He may be in and out of the Test team but in ODIs Rohit has been quite frankly, a nightmare for Sri Lanka in recent times. Holder of the highest ODI score 264 that came against Sri Lanka, Rohit couldn’t have got a more familiar opponent to make his comeback from a thigh injury.

Elevation to vice-captaincy means this series is going to be more special for Rohit. “It is a huge honour to be appointed as the vice-captain. Ten years ago, I was only thinking of playing for India. I am not thinking too much about it, I just want to enjoy the moment as of now. The last few years have been really good, we just need to continue that,” said Rohit.

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Captaincy comes naturally to Rohit. Three titles in the Indian Premier League apart from an exemplary record was reason enough for the selectors to consider him for the job. International cricket is a different ball game compared to the IPL, but Rohit said “the excitement and the energy level is the same”.

“So yes, nothing changes too much. I am the vice-captain here, there I was the captain, so I was more in front. Here I have to play a little behind-the-scene role.”

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The one-day series starts in the backdrop of the humiliating whitewashed inflicted by India. But Sri Lanka will take some confidence from their upset win over India in the Champions Trophy when they chased down a 300-plus total.

READ | India vs Sri Lanka ODIs: Upul Tharanga pleads for patience after Test debacle

“I have no idea about the squad for this ODI series but what they had in the Champions Trophy was a very good side. They beat us quite comfortably. So you know in one day cricket they are a very good team. We just got to do what we have been doing for the past few years,” said Rohit.

“As far as I am concerned we need to look at what we need to do as a team and bring out the best on the field. That’s what we did in the recent Test series. We just focused on what we need to do as a group and that has always been the talk. We need to focus on our ability and strengths.”

Having recently completed 10 years in international cricket, Rohit said it’s been a roller-coaster ride. “Those 10 years have gone really fast. It has been up and down but that’s how it is for any sportsman. You get to learn a lot more when you have your ups and downs. It teaches you a lot many things,” he said.

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“Before those ten years, I never thought I would play for India. I was just enjoying my cricket, playing for my school, for Mumbai. (Only) When I started playing Ranji Trophy, I realised that I have that goal at which I can look at. And once I was picked up for Indian team, there was no looking back. Even now when I stand here being the vice-captain, it feels pretty good. There’s lot more to do and I look forward to it.”

At the same time, he has had to cope with the disappointment of not being able to cement his place in the Test team. “Nobody likes to sit out. But again, it all depends on the team dynamics, what the captain and the coach wants to play. And you got to accept the fact and move forward. It was great to watch everyone displaying that skill. (Winning) 3-0 outside India is a great achievement.”

First Published: Aug 16, 2017 17:41 IST