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‘He can create a Virender Sehwag-like impact’: Why Pathan believes Rohit Sharma can be as effective as former India opener in Tests – cricket


Irfan Pathan, the former all-rounder, is confident of Rohit Sharma having a similar kind of impact for India in Tests as his former teammate Virender Sehwag. Rohit, who started his Test career in 2013 as a middle-order batsman, was elevated to the role of opener last year against South Africa and so far, has stellar numbers batting at the top. Opening the innings, Rohit amassed 529 runs in the three-Test series in October and another 27 against Bangladesh.

Rohit became the first-ever batsman to score two centuries on debut as a Test opener and Pathan believes the batsman’s confidence stems from his brilliant ODI record last year, which saw him score 1490 runs, including five centuries at the 2019 World Cup.

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“We also got to see the double-century in Test cricket that we had already seen in ODIs when he came as an opener. The more matches he will play in the coming years, subject to his keeping fit, he can have a similar impact like Virender Sehwag,” Pathan said on the Cricket Connected Show on Star Sports. “Last two years we have seen a different kind of Rohit Sharma, the guy who wants to score hundred after hundred. That will help him to do really well in Test cricket for the next few years.”

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Ranking the opening batsman as one of his top-3 openers of all time, Pathan believes Rohit’s success as an ODI opener could spur him to achieve greater heights in Tests as well. However, at 33, Rohit may not attain a Sehwag-like peak given he has played just 32 Tests as compared to the former India opener’s 104 matches.

“We have seen that recently when he started playing as an opener in Test cricket. The whole career of Rohit Sharma in Test cricket looks different now. Because when he was a middle-order batsman in Test cricket, he was not performing to the extent we expect out of him,” Pathan said.

“There will be always a question on longevity because Sehwag has played 100 Test matches. Rohit Sharma is a champion in ODI cricket, he will be in my top 3 openers of ODI history. If we talk of Test matches, he will be a little behind because he may not be able to play that many matches.”


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