Rohit Sharma has insisted that he is ready to bat anywhere in the batting lineup and he is sure that the team management will have figured out his role in the lineup by the time reaches Australia. He added that the bounce on Australian pitches is not that big a factor as it is made out to be.
Rohit Sharma, who has a 46-plus average in 32 Tests, is expected to play a crucial role on the tour to Australia alongside Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane and Cheteshwar Pujara with Virat Kohli set to come back to India after the first Test. He has enjoyed a good run in the Test matches as an opener in the recent past, scoring two big hundreds and a double hundred immediately after his promotion to the top of the batting order. However, with KL Rahul making his return to the Test side, the opening position will be up for contention as the Karnataka batsman is a natural opener.
On being asked about his preferred batting position, the Mumbaikar expressed that he is happy to bat anywhere in the batting lineup and added that he doesn’t know if the team management will change his role as an opener.
"I will tell you the same thing that I have told everyone all this while. I will be happy to bat wherever the team wants me to but I don't know if they would change my role as an opener," Rohit said, as quoted by TOI.
Rohit insisted that the team management will have figured out his role in the batting order by the time he would reach Australia after completing the strength and conditioning work at National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru.
"I am sure the guys already in Australia must have figured out what are options when Virat leaves and who are the guys who will open the innings. Once I reach there, I will probably have a clearer idea of what's going to happen. I will be okay to bat wherever they want," the Mumbaikar said.
Australia is famous for its bouncy wickets and it is a factor that is always considered by the selectors while selecting the team to tour Down Under. However, the Mumbai Indians captain had a different take on this and claimed that the pitches in Australia are no longer threatening as it used to be.
"We talk about bounce but except for Perth, over the past few years, the other grounds (Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney), I don't think have that much bounce. Nowadays, especially while opening the batting, I will have to think about not playing the cut or pull shots and focus on playing in the 'V' and as straight as possible," he said.
To make his point concrete, he cited the example of how Nathan Lyon was Australia's best bowler in the Perth Test which Australia won in 2018, in which the off-spinner claimed 8 wickets.
"We talk about bounce on Australian tracks. But tell me how many people got out on bouncers during the last series? When we played in Perth in 2018-19, it was Nathan Lyon, who got eight wickets, including a five-for. In Australia, half the job is done if you can start well up front," he added.