Former Australia cricketer Matthew Hayden on Thursday picked Rohit Sharma as his player of the ICC World Cup 2023 thanks to the Indian captain's explosive batting throughout the tournament.
Rohit is India's second highest scorer in this edition but its not about the number of runs he amassed but how he has got them which has been a privilege to watch.
Rohit scoring his runs faster than the rest
Out of the 10 ODIs India has played so far, Rohit has scores of 47, 61, 40, 4, 87, 46, 48, 86, 131 and 0. He is the fifth highest scorer in this World Cup with 550 runs at an average of 55 with one hundred and three fifties. And 416 runs out of the overall tally have come through boundaries for the Hitman.
But the main point to be noted here is that the 36-year-old has scored all his runs at a staggering strike rate of 124.15, which is the best among the top-10 batters in this World Cup.
Change in mindset and approach
Rohit has made it a point to give India flying starts with the bat and dominate the opposition bowlers in the powerplay which is why he has the most number of sixes in the tournament with 28 maximums.
And only Virat Kohli has hit more fours than Rohit's 62 with 64 boundaries. But Kohli's strike rate is nowhere near Rohit's.
Looking at the impact that Rohit has had in this World Cup for his team, Hayden picked him as his top batter of the tournament.
"Rohit Sharma is almost my player of the tournament, the impact he had is huge," Hayden said on commentary during the second semi-final between Australia and South Africa.
Change in culture brought in by Rohit
Former England captain Nasser Hussain also heaped praise on Rohit for the way he has led from the front for Team India.
"The headlines tomorrow will be about (Virat) Kohli, will be about Shreyas Iyer, and will be about Mohammad Shami. But the genuine hero of this Indian side, who has changed the culture of this Indian side is Rohit Sharma.
"Group stage is different and knockout stage is different and the skipper showed everyone and showed his dressing room that they are going to play fearless cricket in the knockouts as well, Rohit Sharma sent a clear message with the approach," Hussain said on Sky Sports.