Nagpur : India’s dominance in the five-match ODI series against Australia underlines its solid bench- strength and shows that future is bright, said opener Rohit Sharma. India showed great depth in their bowling and batting as all the 14 members of the squad announced for the five one- dayers contributed to help the hosts outclass Australia 4-1 in the five-match series. Asked whether he is part of a team that has the strongest bench strength in a long time, Rohit said: “I can’t comment on that (whether we have the strongest bench strength now) as I have been with the Indian team only for the last 10 years.
“This team certainly has good pool of reserves. Whoever has got the opportunity, has come in and performed. It shows we have got guys who can take up the challenge and perform. “We missed Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar came in and got wickets. Rahane scored consistently in the series. It goes to show the future is bright,” he added.
Rohit also praised the bowlers for bouncing back regularly from tough situations. “All the bowlers who participated have gone with the mindset of taking wickets. That is what these guys have done. To restrict Australia to 242 today was not easy. Even the last game we thought they would reach 350. The bowlers have allowed our batters to play freely,” he said. Rohit himself has been on a roll ever since he has come back from injury and stylish the batsman said it is important for him to keep performing as the team relies a lot on the openers.
“It is my job to score runs as an opener. The team really depends on the start that we give. It adds to success of the team. I just go out and play my game. That is what I am going to do in the future, see the opposition and plan accordingly,” said Rohit after scoring a match-winning 125 in the fifth ODI against Australia. Though IPL was his first competitive tournament after recovering from a serious thigh injury, he was amongst the runs in the Champions Trophy before he was rested for the following West Indies tour. He came back to play in Sri Lanka and scored two successive hundreds and a fifty. And now against Australia, he scored two half centuries and a classy hundred on Sunday night. The openers did do a commendable job for India in the series with Mumbai mates Rohit and Ajinkya Rahane racking up three 100 plus partnerships in a row. Rohit he said he likes to bat alongside Rahane, who got to play in the series due to the absence of Shikhar Dhawan.
“We have played lot of cricket in Mumbai. We talk a lot in the middle, we discuss when need to take risk and when not to. These are the little things that help build partnerships. He played really well in the series and handled the new ball well,” he said.