Rohit Sharma has a lot going for him as he prepares for India’s 2019 World Cup clash against Australia on Sunday. The India vice-captain averages more than 60 against Australia and scored a fighting unbeaten 122 to seal victory against South Africa in their World Cup opener.
However, Rohit said history won’t matter a lot when the teams collide at The Oval.
“The past is past,” Rohit was quoted as saying by the ICC.
“What’s gone before means nothing, it’s just about being better on the day, nothing else. I will not look back, it gives you confidence but it’s just about tomorrow, not the history. Self-belief has played a big part in these past five or six years, I know I can get the job done for the team.
“I don’t look at records or milestones or where I am in rankings, it’s just about playing well and doing a good job for the team. Perhaps there will be external rewards but that’s for the end of my career, not now.”
India have won just five of their 15 ODI matches at The Oval. Moreover, Australia came from behind to win the bilateral ODI series in India earlier in the year. Rohit said his team will need to be on top of its game.
“We’ve got a good rivalry, we played some really good cricket there and they played really well in India. We just need to focus on the basics and then everything will follow,” he added.
“I was happy with my performance against South Africa, I had to curb my natural instincts and play to the conditions and that gives me immense satisfaction. It wasn’t my best innings but it was one of my best innings.”
The one bit of recent history that Rohit did look into was Australia’s struggles against the short ball against the West Indies. While they did well to recover from 38-4, Rohit said India quicks – led by Jasprit Bumrah – know what needs to be done.
“If the batsmen is finding it uncomfortable we will welcome him with some short stuff but these guys play bouncers all the time growing up in Australia,” Rohit added.
“Even the best batsmen will find it difficult against short-pitched bowling and we’ve definitely got the attack to do that. However, we shouldn’t get carried away, we need to read the conditions and keep their batsmen guessing.”
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