Rohit whacked five sixes and 22 fours in his innings before getting stumped by Quinton de Kock.
Mumbai: Rohit Sharma's stellar knock of 176 runs propelled India to a strong start in the first Test against South Africa. All eyes were on the right-hander, who walked out to open the first time in Test matches. The 32-year-old accelerated his knock as the day progressed, and reached to his 50 just before lunch.
Rohit whacked five sixes and 22 fours in his innings before getting stumped by Quinton de Kock. An ecstatic skipper Kohli led the applause as Rohit punched the ball towards deep extra cover to smash his first ton as a Test opener.
Speaking at the end of the day’s play, Rohit said that opening the batting always suited his game as he loved to wear his pads and walk straight out to take part in the action.
“I think it suits my game, just wear the pads and bat. Waiting game, when I used to bat at five or six number, I won’t say it didn’t suit my batting. Your mind is fresh, we know we have to play the new ball. You know the bowlers who are bowling with the new ball do, so the game plan is easier for you. You know you have to face the new ball and these will be the fielders. At six, the ball is reversing, field placement is different and you need to keep all those things in mind. That game of wearing the pads and going in to bat suits my game,” said Rohit.
Rohit also revealed that after playing out a few overs, they realised that the ball was not turning much and hence, they could target spinners.
“We played few overs of the two spinners and we realised that the ball wasn’t turning much and there was not much bounce. We wanted to use our feet and get closer to the ball and then obviously those are my shots that I play and I wanted to back myself and back my game. And what you saw today what pretty much what I do, pretty much my batting. Sticking to my template was very important,” Rohit said.
“Me and Mayank spoke between overs to try and find those little gaps and place the ball between two fielders and try and strike. Because it is very important on a pitch like that where it’s slower and lower. We need to keep rotating strike where the bowler doesn’t find the rhythm,” he added.