Rohit Sharma, popularly known as the ‘Hitman’ of the Indian cricket team, is one of the most destructive batsmen of the modern era. Ever since making his international debut in 2007, Rohit Sharma has enthralled fans with his effortless stroke play and audacious hitting abilities. When on song, there are barely any bowlers in world cricket who can contain him.
Blessed with a seemingly endless array of strokes all around the ground and the unique ability to maintain a high strike rate without taking many risks, Rohit can single-handedly take the game away from the opposition within a matter of overs once set. His natural flair, combined with the power to clear the boundary frequently makes him a batters’ nightmare.
In his 16 years in international cricket so far, Rohit Sharma has played 387 international matches in total across formats. This includes 158 ODIs, 156 T20Is and 73 Test matches. He made his international debut on June 23, 2007 against Ireland in a 50-over game. Though he did not set the stage on fire in his debut match, scoring only 3 runs, big things were expected from the talented Mumbaikar.
Rohit Sharma’s Batting Greatness in Numbers
- Holds the record for the highest individual score in ODI history – 264
- Only batsman with 3 double hundreds in ODI cricket
- Only player to hit 100 sixes in T20 International cricket
- joint-fastest century in T20 internationals – off 35 balls
- Most runs in a single World Cup – 648 in 2019 edition
- Captained India to historic T20 World Cup triumph in 2022
Rohit Sharma’s 10 Epic Innings:
264 runs vs Sri Lanka in 2014:
This epic 264 run knock off just 173 balls came at the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata. With this score, Rohit shattered the record for the highest individual ODI score held previously by Martin Guptill. Rohit clobbered 33 fours and 9 towering sixes as hapless Lankan bowlers had no place to hide. This innings marked Rohit’s coming of age on the world stage. The scorecard of this 264 run blitz will be etched in cricketing folklore forever.
162* vs West Indies in 2022:
Walking into bat early due to India’s top order collapse, captain Rohit Sharma played one of his most sublime knocks, sculpting an unbeaten 162 off just 97 balls. He scored all around the dial, playing authoritative pulls and drives on his way to a monumental knock, rescuing India from a precarious situation and posting a challenging total eventually.
209 vs Australia in 2017:
At the Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru, known for its batting friendly conditions, Rohit devoured the Australian attack including frontline pacers Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood. He stroked his way to a fabulous 209 off just 158 deliveries in an innings showcasing his impressive range of strokes and unwavering focus.
118 vs Australia in 2022:
Chasing 187 against Australia, India were in tatters at 51 for 3 before Rohit staged a remarkable recovery. He stroked his way to 118, taking India safely across the line with a composed run chase against a world class attack.
125* vs Australia in 2022:
In this high stakes T20 series decider against Australia, Rohit unleashed mayhem on a quality attack after the early dismissal of KL Rahul. He smacked an unbeaten 61-ball 125, with 7 hits over the ropes, taking India to an imposing 195. His belligerence powered India to an unassailable 2-1 series lead.
140 vs Pakistan in 2019 World Cup:
In one of the most anticipated ODI contests, Rohit took apart a strong Pakistan bowling lineup including Mohammed Amir and Shadab Khan enroute to 140 off just 113 balls. His dismissive pull shots and ability to clear the ropes left the Pakistanis clueless as Rohit powered India to 336.
Test Double Ton vs South Africa in 2019:
Rohit slammed his maiden test double century with an imperious 212 against South Africa in 2019. He displayed immaculate concentration and composure in this innings lasting over 7 hours, showcasing his versatility across formats.
Captain’s Knock vs Bangladesh in 2022 T20 World Cup:
Under high stakes in a must-win World Cup encounter, Rohit Sharma produced an authoritative half century under pressure. His vintage knock helped set the platform for an Indian victory before rain played spoilsport. His leadership skills were evident throughout the innings.
177 vs Sri Lanka in 2013:
Rohit stamped his class with a scintillating 177 on a difficult Mohali surface in 2013, taking India to a 300+ score almost single-handedly. He cut and pulled with disdain in a top class innings under pressure, rescuing India from a collapse.
171* vs Australia in 2016:
In a successful record ODI run chase at the WACA, Perth, Rohit starred with an unbeaten 171, taking India over the line after being four down for not much. His audacious hitting demoralized the Aussies in their own backyard in one of India’s most memorable ODI victories.
Rohit Sharma – Career at a Glance
- 226 ODI matches
- 394 International matches
- 9283 ODI runs
- 14684 International runs
- Holds the record for highest ODI score(264)
- Only player with three scores of 200+ in ODIs
- Fourth on the list of leading run scorers for India in ODIs
- Only Indian batsman with three T20I hundreds
- Most Sixes for India in T20I cricket (161 sixes)
- Third highest run getter in Test cricket as an opener
- Captained India to Asia Cup triumph in 2022
- Captained India to historic T20 World Cup win in Australia in 2022
Rohit Sharma’s Prolific Test Career:
Hitman Rohit G Sharma has also carved out an impressive Test match career. He made his Test debut on November 6, 2013 in a home match against West Indies. Though his maiden test innings lasted only 18 balls as he was adjudged LBW for just 4 runs, Rohit soon found his groove in the longer format as well. As a Test opener, he has scored tons of runs and currently averages over 46 in Tests. Some of his memorable Test knocks include:
- 212 vs South Africa, 2019
- 161 vs England, 2021
- 127 vs England, 2021
- 115 vs South Africa, 2022
Rohit Sharma was handed India’s full-time white-ball captaincy in 2022 after Virat Kohli stepped down. He became only the second player after Papua New Guinea’s Geraint Jones to lead an international side in all formats after making his debut as a specialist batsman. As captain, Rohit has led India to memorable victories like the T20 series win in England and the Asia Cup triumph in 2022. Under his leadership, India also ended its 15-year long wait for a second ICC trophy by winning the T20 World Cup in Australia in 2022.
Rohit – The IPL batting great:
Rohit Sharma has also left an indelible mark in the Indian Premier League over the years. He is the third highest run accumulator in the history of the tournament after Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan. Rohit scored 673 runs in IPL 2022 at an average of over 30 and impressive strike rate of 146.
Though he could only manage 268 runs in IPL 2023 so far, his overall batting average in IPL history stands at an excellent 31.34. Rohit has scored over 5500 runs in 227 IPL matches so far and will be hoping to guide Mumbai Indians to a record sixth title soon.
RG Sharma’s batting exploits over the years have drawn comparisons with the legendary Sachin Tendulkar as fans see shades of the batting mastery and style reminiscent of vintage Tendulkar. Rohit has proven his mettle across formats and cemented his legacy as one of the greatest ODI openers of all time. As Rohit enters the twilight of his glorious career, Indian cricket fans will hope there are many more batting gems coming from his willow in the years ahead.
Hitman Rohit’s Legacy
With an illustrious 16 year career studded with several batting milestones already, Rohit Sharma has achieved almost everything in the game. He is undoubtedly one of the greatest ODI openers of all time and among the most destructive limited over batsmen to have played cricket.
Rohit Sharma’s battalion of fans will hope the Hitman continues to mesmerize for a few more years with his signature pulls, drives and aerial hits as he enters the final phase of his fabulous career. Considering cricketers now play till late 30s, Rohit may well have a crack at the 2023 and 2027 World Cups as well.
As long as Rohit is at the crease, anything is possible. Just like arch rival Pakistan do not feel safe till Kohli is batting, no total seems completely out of reach for India when the ‘Hitman’ gets going. Here’s hoping for several more entertaining and match-winning knocks from Rohit’s blade in his remaining years as an active player.