Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan As Good As Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Says Ravi Shastri
When it comes to making bold comments, there are very individuals in world cricket better than Ravi Shastri. The India head coach never shies away from coming up with bold statements every now and then. Well, in his recent statement, he has compared India’s opening pair of Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma to legendary pair Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar.
Ganguly and Tendulkar are one of the most successful opening pairs in the history of the game. For over a decade prior to their retirement, they were one of the most prolific partners in the history of the fifty-over format. Between 1996 to 2007, the two stars amassed 6609 runs in 136 innings. They had 21 hundred and 23 fifty partnerships. Their tally of runs remains the highest in the list of partnerships as openers. Overall their tally is 8227 in 176 innings with 26 century and 29 half-century partnerships.
And while Rohit and Dhawan still have a long way to go, Shastri feels they are well on their way of becoming one of the best pairs in the game. Shastri was quizzed about the Indian top-order and he attributed the consistency of his openers to India’s success in the limited-overs format.
“The top-order is a big factor for India in ODIs. Dhawan and Rohit are one of the best ODI opening pairs at the moment. Why? Because, again, they have put the word ‘overseas’ in the bin. It is the best example. They score runs irrespective of opposition and conditions. Where have they not score runs, tell me,” the Indian coach told Cricbuzz.
Shastri further said that the left and right combination is a big advantage to have at the top of the order. He compared Rohit and Dhawan to legends like Ganguly, Tendulkar, Gilchrist and Hayden.
“I think the left-right combination really helps them. Look at the speed with which Dhawan has got 5000 ODI runs. Look at Rohit’s record, three ODI double hundreds, did we even think that was possible?”
“When they finish, I think they will be comparable to Sachin Tendulkar-Sourav Ganguly – India’s best opening pair in ODIs, or even Matthew Hayden-Adam Gilchrist (Australia) and Gordon Greenidge-Desmond Haynes (West Indies). They are big game players. If you have a good number four and five, you back them up,” he added.
Right now, Dhawan and Rohit are the fourth most prolific opening pair in the history of the ODIs. So far, they have amassed 4,318 runs with the help of 14 century and 13 fifty stands.
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