Want to Take Team Forward From Where Virat Has Left: Rohit


New Delhi: India’s stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma believes his job in the three-match T20I series against Bangladesh will be to take the team forward from where Virat Kohli has left.

Rohit captained India to Asia Cup victory last year and, with Kohli resting, will lead the side again in the T20 series against Bangladesh starting in New Delhi on Sunday.

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“My job as a captain is very simple — I just want to take the team forward from where Virat has left the team. What I have done at the limited opportunities that I have got is to maintain what Virat has done previously with the team. I am just trying to carry that forward, Rohit told reporters on the eve of the first T20I that will be played at the Arun Jaitley Stadium.

The 32-year-old further conceded that the hosts will not take the current Bangladesh team — without senior players like Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal — lightly and will look to be at the top of their game.

“Bangladesh is a very good team. All these years, we have seen how well they have performed, not just at home but away also whenever they have gone out. Especially against us, they have always put us under pressure. So, there’s no way we look this team differently,” he said.

“I understand there are two key players missing (Shakib and Tamim), but they still have quality in their squad which can upset any team on that particular day. I wouldn’t say upset but I would say beat. They are very mature cricketers now as all these players have played for long time.

“There are few young players. But for us, it is important not to focus too much on the opposition, but to focus on what we need to do as a team. We also have a young team and a lot of guys want to show what they are capable off. We would focus on that particular aspect more,” he added.

The Indian captain also stated that either one of Sanju Samson and Shivam Dube will feature in the playing XI for Sunday’s match. “All doors are open for everyone and anyone can play at any point of time.”

One area where the current Indian team has not been able to perform well is while setting up targets and defending them. This area, as acknowledged by the team management including batting coach Vikram Rathour and Kohli himself, needs improvement.

And Rohit is looking to plug-in holes in that area during the three-match series so that when the team travels to Australia next year for the World T20, they have all their bases covered. “We have looked at certain numbers and stats as to how we have done when it comes to chasing and also posting targets. Our numbers are very good when we are chasing, whether we are playing in India or outside.