India vs New Zealand: Veteran batter Rohit Sharma played a memorable knock at Seddon Park in Hamilton when the two teams locked horns in an absolute thriller.
IND vs NZ: Super Overs nostalgia and a Rohit Sharma special in Hamilton. Courtesy: PTI
By Sabyasachi Chowdhury: Rohit Sharma is going through a lean patch in his career where he is neither scoring a lot of runs nor leading his team to wins in crunch games. India’s disappointing performance in the T20 World Cup 2022 semis against England has raised questions about his credentials.
However, there was a time when opponents couldn’t have afforded to take a backseat even for a split second during Rohit’s presence in the middle. New Zealand got the taste of the same nearly three years ago.
Kane Williamson was set to win the Player of the Match after scoring a sparkling 48-ball 95 at Seddon Park in Hamilton. But Rohit, somehow, helped India snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. Rohit’s 40-ball 65 in the stipulated 20 overs wasn’t enough for the Men in Blue to get past the finish line.
However, the knock made sure that the match went down to the Super Over where the onus was again on Rohit. After Williamson and Martin Guptill plundered 17 runs in the one-over eliminator, Rohit and KL Rahul had the humongous task of securing India a victory.
Although Rahul found the boundary once in the first four balls and rotated the strike well with his partner, India needed 10 runs off the last two balls. That’s exactly when Rohit showed the reasons why he was deemed as one of the very best, not only in India, but in the world.
HITMAN ROHIT SHARMA ROARS
Tim Southee is no slouch when it comes to T20s, having already led the Black Caps. He went for two Yorkers and rightly so, but both times, he missed his length by millimetres. However, that was enough for Rohit to get enough elevation and collect two sixes.
India won the Super Over and took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series. But what’s more surprising was the fact that he was batting for the first time in a Super Over and he didn’t have much of a clue about approaching.
“Never batted in a Super Over before. Didn’t know what to expect, whether to go from the first ball or take a single and see what I can do,” Rohit was quoted as saying in the post-match presentation.
Two days later, India went on to beat the Black Caps in another Super Over and eventually won the series 5-0.
Nearly three years down the line, Rohit is faced with another test. While there’s very little doubt about his potential, the Nagpur-born batter has to show that he has plenty of cricket left in him.
In the meantime, India are set to take part in three T20Is and as many ODIs on New Zealand soil from Saturday, November 18 onwards.