Rohit: ‘Batsmen have to execute the roles assigned to them’

India’s reputed batsmen have failed to put on a formidable total while batting first, as opposed to chasing down gargantuan totals.

Rohit Sharma was non-committal about Shivam Dube's promotion in the third T20I.   -  Vivek Bendre

It is among the most dominant outfits in world cricket in longer formats but when it comes to the shortest avatar, the Men in Blue have been consistently inconsistent. One of the major issues that has plagued Virat Kohli and Co. in the last 12 months is their inability of win while batting first.

As much as India’s reputed batsmen have failed to put on a formidable total while batting first, as opposed to chasing down gargantuan totals, its bowlers have faltered in defending moderate to sizeable totals. Vice-captain Rohit Sharma stressed that while he prefers to assess the conditions before starting to play shots, the batsmen have to execute the roles assigned to them.

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“It also depends on how your partner is batting. It’s very, very important that you complement your partner and specific role has been given to all our batters. We try and stick to that role and yes at times, you need to be different and we all are prepared to do that. When we need to approach differently, we are prepared to do that. But the situation should provide us to do that you know. Yeah, my game doesn’t change when we bat first or bowl first,” Rohit said on the eve of Wednesday’s series-decider.

In an effort to add the spice of a big-hitter into the top-order, India promoted promising all-rounder Shivam Dube in Thiruvananthapuram and the experiment worked with the burly left-hander’s quickfire fifty. However, India couldn’t finish the innings on a high, adding just 38 runs in the last five overs.

Rohit was non-committal whether Dube’s promotion, which also adds the left-and-right-hand dimension at the crease in Shikhar Dhawan’s absence, will be persisted with.

“I don’t know if it’s going to be a long-term plan or just for one game, but everything depends on the composition, what are the bowling options they have. Just to change the momentum, we did that the last game. You never know if it might happen in this game or if it might not happen,” Rohit said.

“I don’t know if I’m in the position to talk about it but whatever we did in the last game it was a good move – just to upset the rhythm of the bowler and change it a little bit. If you see the top four in our batting order is pretty straight and the opposition can plan pretty easily. So, on a slower pitch we needed somebody who can take the bowlers on and thought Shivam might be the right option and it paid off.”

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