As Rohit prepares for the Test series in South Africa, he acknowledged the surprising question about his T20 World Cup prospects but did not fully commit either way.
Rohit was asked if some of the senior players see Tests in South Africa, where they have never won a series before, and the T20 World Cup as a potential balm for the wounds left by ODI World Cup heartbreak. He spoke about the importance of the South Africa series, and how everyone – not just the A-lister – is desperate to win there.
Rohit was then asked if the same desperation was there in the T20 World Cup six months later. “Despair is playing cricket,” Rohit said. “Everyone has that desperation. Everyone wants to play. Everyone wants to do well. Wherever you get the chance, you want to do well. I know what you’re trying to say, but you’ll get the answer in time.”
This is the first time any party involved has spoken directly or indirectly about the captain’s situation. Hardik Pandya, who led India in T20Is last year, is out injured with no timetable for a return. Suryakumar Yadav has been the captain in his absence, but this hilarious answer from Rohit goes some way to confirming that his return is more than just speculation if not confirmed.
When asked where he sees himself as a batsman and captain in the next six months, Rohit did not talk about the captaincy. “As a batsman, I’m batting as best as I can. So, yeah, whatever I have in front of me, I’m looking forward to playing whatever I have in front of me.”
However, there is time to go to the T20 World Cup. India’s first dose of glory – a balm so to speak – begins at Centurion on Tuesday. Rohit spoke about getting over the World Cup loss and the importance of this series.
“Even that final, the way we played, you know, you would expect us to go a little further,” Rohit said. “But unfortunately we couldn’t do it. That was the hardest part for all of us to take because honestly, all these years, we’ve worked so hard for all of this. Then you saw how we managed to play the first 10 games. And then in the finals, there’s Some things we didn’t do well in the finals, which obviously cost us the game, but even then, I thought there weren’t a lot of things we could point to that we didn’t do this right, we didn’t do it right.
Could a series of wins in South Africa heal some of that? “We have been coming here for many years,” Rohit said. “Obviously it would be big if we won a series of games. Now I don’t know if winning here – if we get it – can be a balm for losing the World Cup. Honestly, I don’t know. The World Cup is a surprise. The World Cup, from It is very difficult to compare this series with the World Cup, but in itself it is a very big series.
“There’s a lot of history. If we can accomplish this, it will feel good for everyone because…we’ve worked hard, and we need something to show for it. We’re working hard. We need something big. Everyone is.” So desperate. Not just one or two old people. Everyone wants to get great glory for the country and the team. We have all the tools, we just need to play carefree cricket. “Our goal is to play freely and not think about the past or the future.”