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Batting At 4 Won't Affect Champions Trophy Preparation: Rohit

PTI | Updated: May 22, 2017, 9:06 PM IST
Batting At 4 Won't Affect Champions Trophy Preparation: Rohit

(BCCI Photo)

Mumbai: Rohit Sharma believes that batting at No 4 for Mumbai Indians will have no bearing when he goes out to open the batting for India in the ICC Champions Trophy as the two are completely different formats.

"IPL is different from international cricket. I spoke before the start of IPL that to give balance to the team I will bat lower down. I don't know why people compare the two (situations)," said Sharma at the Mumbai Indians'media conference here on Monday.

Rohit scored 333 runs in 17 games for Mumbai Indians batting at No 4 but as he gears up to open for India in England, the stylish right-hander feels that it's something that international players adapt to.

"It has happened for 10 years - players going on to play Test cricket or 50 over games after IPL. I don't think it's going to be difficult to adapt in this age. All it needs is to develop the mindset," he said confidently.

Asked about which title he relished the most, Rohit pointed the current title as the best he has won.

"I can't single out any one of these. Last night's T20 game was one of the best I had played. I am very happy. No team has won the IPL thrice before. It's a very big achievement and we have to take this confidence forward," he added.

He said captaining the MI side has helped him significantly. "It (captaincy) does help me a lot. Last year, we had a tough time and could not qualify for the play-offs, but we knew we had the players to do well this year and they delivered. The attitude of the players remained the same whether we won or lost. As captain I love to inspire teams as much as I can," he said.

There will be a mega auction next year but Rohit says that he will like to remain a part of Mumbai Indians. "I would love to play for my state franchise. I have played all my cricket in Mumbai and lived here all my life. We would also be happy to retain the whole squad."

Asked to compare current head coach Mahela Jayawardene of Sri Lanka and Ricky Ponting of Australia, under whom MI won the trophy in 2015, the skipper termed it as different approaches.

"Both are different. Both have vast experience of international cricket and deep knowledge about the game. Both were captains of their respective countries and I learned a lot of things from them. This is where IPL is so good, in bringing together a mix of international players from different countries," he said.

The MI skipper said that team thinktank had no second thoughts in retaining the same eleven that got the better of Kolkata Knight Riders in Qualifier 2 at Bangalore for the final against RPS.

"It was a straight forward selection. I know some guys missed out, but only eleven could go out and take the field."

He also praised Pandya brothers - man of the match in the final Krunal and India international Hardik - for "expressing themselves on the field."

"They are very expressive players who love to express themselves on the field. Krunal has batted at different positions for us and has shown a lot of maturity. He's a brilliant (left arm slow) bowler. He's a great prospect for Indian cricket."

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First Published: May 22, 2017, 8:51 PM IST

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