Had a great time playing under Virat Kohli: Rohit Sharma

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12 Dec 2021 | 03:48 PM
authorcricket.com staff

Had a great time playing under Virat Kohli: Rohit Sharma

Rohit took charge as permanent India limited-overs captain with a T20I home series against New Zealand

Rohit Sharma, who will be at the helm of affairs for the Indian side in the white-ball format, wants a strong bond among the players to achieve the goals set by the team. 

The right-handed batter believes Head coach Rahul Dravid will act as an enabler in establishing that in the team's pursuit of excellence and also added that the entire team had a great time playing under Virat Kohli.

In an interview with bcci.tv, Rohit said, "We want to create a strong bond between players and that will help us in achieving the goal we want and yeah, Rahul bhai obviously, is going to help us in doing that. So we look forward to that. 

The 34-year old wants his team to shut itself from outside noise as what would matter in the long run is what the players think of each other.

"That is to win games and play the way you are known to play. I think those talk that happens outside are immaterial; what is important is what we think of each other, what I think of y or z, that is important," he added.

With the added responsibility of leading the side, Rohit aims to focus on the job and not think about what others are saying. 

"When you play for India, there will be pressure. A lot of people will talk about a lot of things, positive, negative; for me personally, as a cricketer, it's important for me to focus on my job and not what others are talking about. You can't control that. 

"I have kept on saying this, and I will say this a million times, the message is to team as well, the team understands that when we play a high profile tourney, there will be a lot of talks but what is important for us is to focus what we have in hand," he added.

Rohit also spoke about how the team under Kohli had a "great time". "Five years that he led the team, he led from the front every time, we stepped onto the park, and there was clear grit and determination to win every game, that was the message to the entire squad," Rohit said on the sidelines of Indian Test squad's training session.

"We have had a great time playing under him (Kohli) and I have played a lot of cricket under him, I have enjoyed each and every moment, still continue to do that," the new white-ball captain put an end to all the conjectures that have been drawn about the professional relationship between the two.

For Rohit, rather than thinking about winning the marquee finals, the message to the boys will be to focus on the process rather than the end goal. "There are lot of things that we need to do right before we think of end result. The last ICC trophy (Champions Trophy), we won was in 2013.

"..But I don't see anything wrong that we did after that Champions Trophy. We played well and performed as a team but just that we couldn't get that extra inch," he said.

"That can happen as international cricket is very demanding but that's the challenge as we are all professionals."

But he does feel that to win a Championship, one needs to do a lot of things right. "Lot of World Cups are coming and India will be eyeing to do well in lot of them. Our focus is on winning Championship but there is a process that we need to follow as a group.

"If you need to win the Championship, there are lot of other things that you first need to take care of, then focus on the end goal."

The focus will be on getting better as a player first and then collectively as a team. "When challenges are there and how you come out of those tough challenges is very important and I think, in the past we have been put in those situations before, where we have been 10/3 or 15/2 or something like that, we failed to recover," he made it clear.

"Something that we need to keep in mind moving forward, its one of the areas. There are other areas we need to keep improving as a team and getting better as a team."

For him, one of his primary tasks is to ensure that each player is aware why he has been picked in the team and what is expected of him. "I have got limited opportunities to lead Team India but whenever I have got an opportunity, I have tried to keep it simple, tried to keep one thing in common, clear communication to players," he said.

"I have tried making sure that they understand their roles, and that is what it is all about, understanding that role and going out there and performing that role. "Because, for us, coach and captain, it is important that we have clear communication and that is what I want to do, making people understand why they have been picked in the team."

(With inputs from PTI) 

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India tour of South Africa, 2021/22IndiaRohit SharmaRahul Dravid

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