Rohit Sharma: Australia one place where we want to leave our mark as a unit

Rohit, who boasts a stellar track record in ODIs Down Under — 805 runs in 16 matches at 57.50 — attributed his purple patch to the pace and bounce in Australian pitches.

Rohit Sharma: "All we are thinking of is doing well as a unit; you need the whole unit to come together."   -  afp

India vice-captain Rohit Sharma, on Monday, said playing cricket in Australia is always incredible as the fans always appreciate a good performance.

Rohit, who boasts a stellar track record in ODIs Down Under — 805 runs in 16 matches at 57.50 — attributed his purple patch to the pace and bounce in Australian pitches.

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"I grew up playing on cement pitches back home. And the bounce, especially in Brisbane and Perth, allows me to play my game," Rohit said.

The Mumbai batsman, who has three hundreds and two fifties in Australia at a strike-rate of 90.44, felt the four-Test series, which gets underway in Brisbane from December 6, will be a litmus test for the Virat Kohli-led Team India.

"I've had good outings here in the past.  The real challenge, however, is red ball cricket. But for now, I just want to focus on the  T20s."

India's success in the past was built on the slowness of the pitches, with the top-order batsmen usually struggling against the rising ball on wickets that aided seamers.

However, recent exploits in South Africa and England have instilled belief in the squad that overseas success can be achieved.

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"Last time we were in Australia (2016), we beat them 3-0 in the T20I series. Yes, negotiating the bounce will be a challenge for all our batsmen but most of these guys have come here before, so they understand the conditions well.

"Australian bowlers will pose a threat regardless of the format. One of the reasons we came here early was to get used to the bounce. I haven't played at the new Perth stadium yet, but I believe Brisbane's got the fastest wicket in Australia," Rohit noted.

Rohit emphasised the significance of doing well in Australia with the 2019 World Cup around the corner. India will play its nine round robin league matches of the marquee event at six different venues.

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"Australia at home will always be dangerous. We got to be prepared for it. All we are thinking of is doing well as a unit; you need the whole unit to come together," he said.

"Whenever we travel outside India, there's a special feeling. Australia is one place where we want to leave our mark as a unit. We want to make it count this time around; there's a good feeling (in the squad) about all the three formats ...The motive is to try and cease all the moments and win tournaments, especially with the World Cup around the corner."

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