ICC Cricket World Cup 2023

Rohit Sharma opens up on getting India captaincy at the age of 34 years


October 4 2023
Rohit Sharma, India, ICC Cricket World Cup 2023

Rohit Sharma also replied to the question of whether India will win the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023.

India captain Rohit Sharma was asked to share his thoughts on getting the captaincy very late in his career. His case is a peculiar one, as his predecessors and three of the most successful India captains – Sourav Ganguly, MS Dhoni, and Virat Kohli – became India captains at the age of 27, 26, and 27 respectively.

Rohit Sharma, on the other hand, spent much of his time as deputy to Virat Kohli and only became the all-format India captain in 2022. He was almost 34 when the Indian captaincy came to him. Although he had previously commanded India in Kohli’s absence and is the most successful IPL captain with the Mumbai Indians, a permanent position as captain of India had evaded him.

He led India to the semi-final of the T20 World Cup 2022 and will now lead India in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 which will begin on October 5 at home.

With a commanding win in the Asia Cup, Rohit-led side is ticking all the boxes. And that gives 1.4 billion people hope. Even though captaincy came late to Rohit, he might just be the man to end India’s decade-long ICC jinx.

“Obviously, you want to be at your peak for this, say when you are 26-27. But you cannot always get what you want. You are talking about the Indian captaincy and there have been stalwarts in the Indian team. Many more players deserved to be the captain of the team. I had to wait for my turn and that’s absolutely fair enough. The guys before, Virat was before me, so was MS (Dhoni),” Rohit Sharma told Indian Express.

“Just look at the names that are missed out: Gautam Gambhir, Virender Sehwag … these are all stalwarts of Indian cricket. Not to forget Yuvraj Singh. He never captained India. Yuvraj has been such a match winner for India, he should have been the captain at some stage but he didn’t get it. That’s life. I got it now and I am grateful for it. I would rather have it when I know how to captain a team, when I know what is required and all. Rather than when I don’t know the ABCD of captaincy. So in that respect, this is good,” he added.

I don’t have an answer for if India will win the World Cup: Rohit Sharma

Rohit Sharma was also asked about India’s drought of ICC trophies since 2013. Although India are favourites to lift the World Cup crown given it will be played on their home turf, the ever-so-candid Rohit Sharma doesn’t guarantee a thing.

“Yes, we have not won; it’s fine. I’m not a person who overthinks and puts myself in a tough place where I’m not able to make a decision. England started winning now; in 2019 they won the World Cup after so many years. It happens. Australia is the only consistent team who have won. After 2007, they won the ODI World Cup in 2015. They won the T20 World Cup in Dubai,” the India captain said.

“I don’t have an answer for it (Will India win the World Cup). How can I say that now? All I can hope is that the team is in a good space. Everybody is fit and fine. That’s all I can hope for. I cannot say beyond this. Space is such an important factor and it’s a very key thing now,” he added.

Both of India’s warm-up matches were rained out. Now they will move to Chennai to prep for their World Cup opener on October 8 against Australia.  

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