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A combined effort coming from all departments saw India thump South Africa in the season-opening Test by 203 runs. If it was about R Ashwin with the ball in the first innings, Ravindra Jadeja and Mohammed Shami did the trick in the second innings.
Indian fielders did toil for a few extra overs to get two final wickets on the fifth day but in the end, it was a comprehensive win for the hosts.
Rohit Sharma, who scored twin centuries in the match, was awarded Man of the Match for scoring a total of.303 runs in the Test.
The limited-overs vice-captain, who has been opening in that format since 2013, revealed that he was delivered the message that he would open in Tests someday a couple of years back and had he had started preparing for the opener’s role way back.
“Couple of years ago it was communicated to me that I might open someday. Even in nets I used to practice with the new ball. Wouldn’t say it was a surprise. No matter what ball you play, whether it’s red ball or white ball. At the start you’ve got to be careful. Focus on basics – leaving ball outside off, playing close to the body. My job here is to play in a certain manner, that’s what they expect me. And I’m going to try to do that,” he said.
Rohit, who started his Test career with twin centuries against West Indies in two Tests in 2013, wasn’t a regular in the playing XI. After making his return for the Australia tour last year, Rohit played first three tests but missed the fourth Test as he returned to India.
When India played the first Test against West Indies after World Cup 2019, Rohit missed out on a place in the playing XI that saw the experts pitching with the idea to ask Rohit to open the innings as he was considered too good a player to sit on the bench.
Rohit had scored five centuries at World Cup 2019 just before the West Indies series.
With his magical effort in the opening Test, it is confirmed that he will play all five Test matches at home – two Tests against Bangladesh as well. Rohit’s biggest challenge will come when India will travel to New Zealand next year.
Read More: India Vs South Africa 2019/20: First Test (Day Five) – India Clinches Solid Victory By 203 Runs
India’s openers have failed to perform over the past few years, which has already seen as many as eight opening combinations being tested in the past one year.