Rohit Sharma- ‘I want to go to the stage I was in before the 2019 World Cup’

Rohit Sharma He wants to “eliminate” the burden of external pressure and expectations that comes with captaining the host nation in the World Cup.

When the tournament last came to India in 2011, Rohit faced “heartbreak” as he did not get a place in the 15-man final squad. Twelve years later, it’s possible that this could be Rohit’s last chance for World Cup glory. But he insists he is as relaxed as anyone can be.

“For me, it’s important how I keep myself relaxed and not worry about external factors playing a role, be it positive or negative,” Rohit told PTI in a recent interview. “I want to shut everything down. I want to go back to the phase I was in before the 2019 World Cup. My mental state was very good and I prepared really well for the tournament.”

Rohit top run chart, scored 648 runs and five centuries in the tournament. He credits that success to his mindset at that time, and he is trying to recreate something similar as he prepares for the 2023 edition.

“I was in good shape, in a good mindset,” he said. “I want to get that back and I have time to do that. Trying to remember what the right things I was doing before the 2019 World Cup as a cricketer and a person. Want to see the thought process again.” ,

Captains are often asked about their legacies ahead of the World Cup. Rohit was also asked about this. There is no doubt that he will go down as one of India’s best ODI opening batsmen, but what about captaincy?

Rohit is a successful IPL captain, having led Mumbai Indians to five titles, but is yet to win a silver medal in an ICC tournament. Does this play out in his mind?

“I’m not a person who thinks about what kind of legacy I’ll leave behind,” he said. “My legacy will be for people to judge and talk about it, not for me to say it. I’m not a firm believer in numbers. You’ve got to be happy and enjoy the time that’s in front of you and be in that moment. “One must try to live.”

Rohit’s immediate challenge as captain will be to perform well in the Asia Cup. He will also be part of the World Cup squad selection meeting sometime during the next week. Rohit stressed on giving clarity to the players as to where India stands in the preparations for the tournament.

“While choosing the best combination, there will be those who will miss out for various reasons and Rahul too Brother (Dravid) and I have tried my best to explain to the players why they are not in the team.”

“We have tried to talk to the players after each selection and the final XI is announced. We talk to them one-on-one, one by one, why they have not been selected.”

“Sometimes I try to put myself in his shoes. When I was not selected in 2011, it was a heart-breaking moment for me and I felt what was left after being dropped from the World Cup squad If anyone is left out, please let me know.” There is a reason for this. If you’re unlucky, there’s nothing we can do.”

How did he deal with his own boycott in 2011?

“I was depressed and sitting in my room and didn’t know what to do next,” Rohit recalled. “I remember Yuvi (Yuvraj Singh) called me to his room and took me out for dinner. He explained to me how it feels when you are left out.

“He told me, ‘The best thing is that you have so many years in front of you. As we play in the World Cup, you take this opportunity to work hard on your game, your skills and come back. There is no way That you will not play for India or will not get a chance to play in the World Cup.

“We have tried to talk to the players after each selection and the final XI is announced. We talk to them one-on-one, one by one, why they have not been selected.”

“I went back to the drawing board, worked hard and immediately after the World Cup, I bounced back, and since then it has been good. Since it is I who has gone through this feeling, no one can tell me why “It’s easier said than done. I’ve had to deal with being left out of the World Cup squad and I know exactly what that feels like.”

Having said that, Rohit also admitted that there is always a risk of things backfiring with some selection calls, but he stressed that things were done keeping in mind the best interests of the team.

“I, the coach and the selectors take into account all the factors like the opposition, the surface, our strengths, their weaknesses and then reach a consensus,” he said. “There’s a good chance we won’t always be right. At the end of the day, some individuals make decisions, and we as human beings are bound to make mistakes. We won’t always be right.”

India concluded its six-day Asia Cup camp on August 29 in Bengaluru. After this they will leave for Sri Lanka where they will face Pakistan on September 2. India had won the Asia Cup last time held in the 50-over format. In 2018. In this sense, India has a title of sorts to defend. However, the goals are very different for Rohit.

“For me, it’s all about making memories and building good relationships with my teammates. Be happy with what you get and what you have.”

Shashank Kishore is senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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