Opening partner doesn’t matter to me, says Rohit Sharma

“The partner doesn’t matter, to be honest”, Rohit said.

Chennai: They are one of the best pairs India have seen in limited-overs game.

Rohit accepted Shikhar Dhawan’s pullout was a blow given the form he was in. The right-left combo stands only behind the storied partnerships of Sachin Tendulkar-Sourav Ganguly (6,609 runs) and Tendulkar-Virender Sehwag (3,919 runs). “Shikhar’s absence will be felt but we have got guys who can take on the role and perform well”, he observed. “Whenever we play a series we have to make sure that the guys are 100 per cent fit and the trainers take care of that”, he added.

In the backdrop of fiery series in February and March in Australia, Indian Vice-captain Rohit Sharma today said both the teams were aggressive in nature, but as professional cricketers one should not cross the limits.

“But, we have got a few guys who can replace him”. While his other team-mates were still warming up for the session, Ajinkya Rahane had already reached the batting arena, all padded up and eager to get as many balls in. He had a great series in the West Indies where he was the Man of the Series.

Asked about the fiery series and a seemingly subdued Aussie Skipper Steve Smith said the series should be played in true spirit and how he saw it, Rohit told the media here that “we have to see once the tournament starts”. That’s why we have the (rotation) policy gong on.

“Before the start of Sri Lanka tour, the captain said he is looking at KL as a No 4 batsman”. Right from Champions Trophy till the last tour to Sri Lanka, he has given impactful performances for the team. Ajinkya has opened in the West Indies.

“Having said that, when you have this kind of versatility in your team, it gives captain and coach a little bit of relief that these guys can take up any position they are offered”.

The Mumbai cricketer said opening is all about complementing each other. Every time you play a new series, you come up with a new mindset.

Speaking about the opening combination in the absence of Dhawan, Rohit did not divulge one particular name, but said that there are multiple options that give the team a lot of flexibility. If the other person is struggling, then I take up that role, and if I am struggling, he takes it. That’s the planning we have in our set up. My main is to give the team a good start. “Whoever gets the opportunity to bat with me will think the same way”, he added.

Ever since he struck gold while opening the batting for India in 2013, Rohit has been the mainstay at the top of the order, often taking his time to get going but ending with mammoth scores by the time he completes his innings.

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