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ICC World Cup 2019 | I Am Here to Lift The Cup, Not For Records: Rohit

Cricketnext Staff |July 7, 2019, 8:54 AM IST
ICC World Cup 2019 | I Am Here to Lift The Cup, Not For Records: Rohit


"26? I don't know... what?"

That was Rohit Sharma's response when informed that he was 26 runs away from Sachin Tendulkar's tally of most runs scored by a batsman in World Cup. Tendulkar had scored 673 runs in 2003, Rohit has 647 in the ongoing 2019 edition. Rohit also equalled Tendulkar's tally of most centuries by a batsman in World Cups - six. Rohit has got there in 15 innings while Tendulkar took 44.

He also has the record for most tons - five - in a single World Cup edition.

These numbers, though, matter little to Rohit. He's not even aware of many of these achievements.

"See, I'm not here for records," he said after his fifth ton, against Sri Lanka in Leeds. "I'm here to play cricket. I'm here to play and score runs and lift the cup. That is what I'm here for. I'm not looking at all those things at all, honestly."

Rohit also refused to call this World Cup run as his best achievement, saying he will be satisfied only if all the effort leads to a title victory.

"No, not yet. If we win the World Cup then probably I would," he said. "If not, then I can't, because eventually winning the cup -- winning the game is important, no matter how many runs you score or how many wickets you take.

"For us, as cricketers, it's important to get the job done, because we all have been looking for this World Cup, which comes four years. You have to wait four years for this. Eventually the job for us is to go and win the finals, the semifinals before that, yes. But as long as that is not accomplished, no matter how many runs you score in the tournament or how many hundreds you get, you won't feel satisfied."

Rohit, though, gave an insight into what's causing the consistency; he goes into each game thinking he has neither played a one-day game, nor scored centuries.

"It is very difficult. Trust me, because you're in that fraternity where you meet so many people and they will talk about how well you're batting, how many runs you're getting, how many hundreds you've scored," he said.

"But to just keep away from all that is very important and I'm trying to do that. Fortunate that we have a bunch of guys around us who do not discuss these kind of things too much, about personal milestones. And my family is here to distract me from that. So those are the things that are keeping me away from staying in the past, because I totally believe that staying in the past is not as important as staying in the present. I don't want to think about how many ODIs I've played or how many runs I've scored or how many hundreds I've got. I just want to stay in present, which is today, and take it from there."

His only focus before the tournament started, he said, was on being in a good mental space.

"I just wanted to be in good space before the start of the World Cup. Because this year's World Cup was a different format. A long format. And then the conditions here really matter a lot," he said.

"So all those things put together, I personally wanted to be in good space, which I think I did pretty well. As soon as the game got away, I left everything behind and started focusing on the new day, which I think really helped me moving forward. And it did work here, but I don't know if it's going to work in the future as well, because every tournament is different. Every series you play is different. But here it is working for me. And that is what I was thinking before the start of the tournament, that I'll try and be in good space by doing so many things. That is very personal. So I tried doing all of those things, which I think help and worked for me."

The team has repeatedly said they don't worry about things being said outside the dressing room, but just a couple of days earlier, Ravindra Jadeja responded angrily and publicly to an assessment by commentator Sanjay Manjrekar. When asked how he deals with 'distractions' - praise or criticism - from the outside, Rohit said his only approach was to stay away and focus inwards.

"All this distraction will happen, but every individual is different, and it depends on how he wants to think about that particular incident or situation," he said. "For me, I want to stay away from all of that and enjoy the beautiful weather in England. I have my family here as well. Most of the time I'm trying to do that rather than all those talks going around and things like that. Because as long as you're playing that will happen.

"A lot of people are staying in the same hotel as us who want us to win the World Cup, who want us to score runs, score centuries. So you kind of want to stay away from all of that because eventually our job is to do that, our job is to come here, play good cricket and win the World Cup, we all know that.

"But constantly yapping in anyone's ear is not right. So I think for us as cricketers, it's important for us to just stay completely put that away and focus on the job at hand."

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Cricket World Cup Points Table

9 7 1 1 15 +0.80
9 7 2 0 14 +0.86
9 6 3 0 12 +1.15
9 5 3 1 11 +0.17
9 5 3 1 11 -0.43
9 3 4 2 8 -0.91
9 3 5 1 7 -0.03
9 3 5 1 7 -0.41
9 2 6 1 5 -0.22
9 0 9 0 0 -1.32

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6420 123
2 India 6807 122
3 New Zealand 4763 113
4 Australia 5470 112
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
see more