India opener Rohit Sharma revelled in his first outing as ‘Test’ opener in Vizag and scored a brilliant century on day 1. Even after playing 1 2 years of international cricket, Rohit wasn’t an automatic selection in the squad but the failures from other openers saw him finally get an opportunity at the top.
It was the decision of the team management to ask him to open and the senior batsman thanked them for providing him with the opportunity that can now see him revive his Test career.
“I wanted to take the opportunity and that’s why I made the management aware of it. I am grateful to them for providing me with the opportunity and I am happy I could score runs,” Rohit said at the end of day’s play.
The debate to promote Rohit as an opener in Tests came up when he did not find a place in the playing XI in the series against West Indies. The team management felt that Rohit was too good a player to warm the bench in the longest format. Incidentally, he was kept out of the playing XI even after scoring five centuries in World Cup.
Team management followed the Sourav Ganguly-model, who had promoted Virender Sehwag as an opener to ensure that he gets a place in the playing XI.
Rohit has kickstarted his opening career in Tests with a century but his real test will be when India will play in New Zealand next year. He has had problems against the moving ball and it will be interesting to see if can emulate his success in tough conditions as well.
Rohit, on day 1 as an opener, batted well and showed his class. He did not let any bowler settle and put the pressure on them by playing his strokes right from the first delivery that he faced. Mayank Agarwal also supported him and was at 84* at stumps.
Rohit would eye to a maximise his score while Mayank will continue his quest to score his Test maiden century.
On the other hand, South African captain Faf du Plessis will hope that his spinners turn the game in their favour on day 2.