World T20 Rewind – Rohit Sharma introduces himself (2007)

The first six years of Rohit Sharma’s career were filled with performances that suggested great potential. The man seemed to possess every gift that a batsman could possibly hope for, but every good performance was followed by a series of failures. However, in 2016, after years of persuasion, Rohit has finally blossomed into the batsman that justifies his talent. Let’s take a look at when Rohit Sharma first announced his presence in international cricket. 

India had to beat South Africa in the final group stage match in the T20 World Cup of 2007 in order to qualify for the semi-final against Australia. India won the toss and chose to bat first. They were heading into the match without the in-form Yuvraj Singh, who was left out due to tendonitis of the left elbow. This was the first time the Mumbai-born lad showed glimpses of his enormous potential.

Rohit Sharma came to the crease after the dismissal of  Virender Sehwag, with the score at 33 for 3. India were clearly missing the impetus Yuvraj provided in the middle order, with the score only reaching 57 in ten overs. After the dismissal of Robin Uthappa in the 11th over, the onus fell on Rohit Sharma to take the innings forward. In his first innings of the tournament, he played some extravagant drives through the cover region and a couple of cut shots through third-man. The mid-wicket region was also cleared for a six by the 20 year-old, and he brought up his half century with a six on the last ball of the innings. He ended up with 50 off 40 balls, with 7 fours and 2 sixes. Along with Dhoni, they were able to put together 56 runs in the last five overs, thrusting the score to 153.

India eventually beat the hosts by a margin of 37 runs, knocking them out of the tournament. The semi-final place was booked, courtesy a brilliant performance by RP Singh with 4 for 13, but the match will be remembered for the arrival of Rohit Sharma to the world stage.

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(Akhil Nair is the sub-editor and writer at The Ring Side View. You can follow him on Facebook Here & Twitter Here)

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