It's turning out to be a fairy tale story for Rohit Sharma, who after enduring years of uncertainty and self-doubt as a Test player, is now breaking records as an opener in the traditional format of the game. He became the first batsman ever to score two hundreds on debut as an opener! And it's only one match old. On Saturday, Rohit broke a host of batting records while producing yet another sublime knock against South Africa at Visakhapatnam.
The right-handed batsman reached the land-mark in 133 balls with a single off the fifth ball of the 53rd over, bowled by Vernon Philander. Vijay Hazare, Sunil Gavaskar (thrice), Rahul Dravid (twice), Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane are the other Indian batsmen to have score centuries in each of a Test.
Rohit, 32, scored a brilliant 176 in the first innings as India declared at 502/7. The Proteas responded strongly, posting 431 runs with centuries from Dean Elgar and Quinton de Kock. Given the opportunity to bat again in the match, Rohit started on a confident note, hitting sixes. First off Keshav Maharaj in the sixth and 12th overs, then a third off Dane Peidt in the 20th over, to become the Indian batsman with the most number of sixes in a Test match. The record previously belonged to Navjot Singh Sidhu, who had hit 8 sixes at Lucknow in 1994.
And with that Rohit now hold the most sixes record in a match in all three formats of the game: Test 10* vs SA at Vizag in 2019; ODI 16 vs Aus at Bengaluru in 2013
T20I and T20I 10 vs SL at Indore in 2017.
After reaching his fifty in the 29th over with a single off the first ball, Rohit broke Rahul Dravid's record for the most number of consecutive fifty-plus scores in Tests at home. Dravid had hit six successive fifty-plus scores between 1997 and 1998. Previously, the record was jointly shared by West Indies' Everton Weekes (Nov 1948 - Feb 1949) and Zimbabwe's Andy Flower (Mar 1993 - Nov 2000).
Rohit also surpassed former Australian-South African cricketer, Kepler Wessels to become the batsman with most runs while opening the innings for the first time in Test cricket. Wessels had 208 runs in his two innings for Australia against England in 1982-83.
Then there are other records:
ROHIT SHARMA has completed 9000 international runs as an opener— Sandeep Sanju (@SanjuRo045) October 5, 2019
Highest average by any player who scored a minimum of 9000 international runs as an opener
ROHIT SHARMA ~ 50.28
SACHIN ~ 48.07
Hayden ~ 47.97
H Amla ~ 46.85
Boycott ~ 46.32 #INDvsSA pic.twitter.com/qHMxLYzZq7
He's the first Indian batsman to score 10 sixes in a Test match.— bet365 (@bet365) October 5, 2019
He's the first player to score seven consecutive 50+ scores on Indian soil.
He now has the most sixes in all three formats for India.
Introducing India's new opener, Rohit Sharma.
âÂÂÂÂÂÂï¸ÂÂÂ Most 6ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£'s for ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ®ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ³ in all formats— Champ Hunt (@Champ_Hunt) October 5, 2019
âÂÂÂÂÂÂï¸ÂÂÂ Nearing a 2ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£nd ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ¯ in the match
âÂÂÂÂÂÂï¸ÂÂÂ 1ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£at ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ®ðÂÂÂÂÂÂ³ batsmen to hit 1ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£0ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£ 6ï¸ÂÂÂâÂÂÂ£'s in a Test match
Opener debates can now end? ðÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂÂ#INDvSA #rohitsharma pic.twitter.com/auHwg8qw1g
Yeah Right Now Rohit Sharma's Avg at Home Is 100+ In 11 Matches and Away He Avg's Just 26.32 In 17 Test Matches With Best oF 79.— Mehran ManiðÂÂÂÂÂÂµðÂÂÂÂÂÂ° (@Abbasi_HooN) October 5, 2019
âÂÂÂÂÂÂRohit Has to PerForm Well Overseas to Become a Good Batsman In Test Cricket.
Rohit has now scored 82, 51*, 102*, 65, 50*, 176 and 84* (at Tea) in his last seven innings.
India were 175/1 in 48 overs at Tea with Rohit and Cheteshwar Pujara (75 off 139) stitching an unbroken stand of 154 runs in 240 balls. And the lead was 246 runs.