New Test captain also toasts Rahane, Pujara’s contributions as India prepare for full change of guard
India’s Test cricket is on the brink of a full-fledged changing of the guard. There is a new captain and the squad is about 300 less experienced caps. Two new hitters will have to fill spots more or less occupied since 2012. The new captain, however, is in no rush to overlook the accomplishments and contributions of those who have come a long way.
Even while looking forward to his next stint as captain, Rohit made a point of acknowledging Kohli. “I’m looking forward to winning as many games as possible and doing the right things with the right players in the squad,” Rohit said. “As a Test team, we are in a very good position right now if you look at our last five years in Test cricket. All credit goes to Virat himself for taking us forward in this particular format. he did with the test team over the years was brilliant to see.
“I have to take it honestly from where it started. The team is in a very good position. Of course we are somewhere halfway in the WTC table. But honestly I don’t think we have done something wrong in the last two or three years of Test cricket. Of course, we want to improve every game we play. That will always be our benchmark moving forward.”
That doesn’t mean Rohit isn’t excited about what he’s currently working with, though. “These guys who are going to replace Pujara and Rahane, they’ve done extremely well every time they’ve had the chance, whether it’s top class cricket at home or India A tours or all the limited opportunities they had while playing Test cricket,” Rohit mentioned. “I think we just have to support these guys to be good for us. Sometimes we have to look forward. These guys have been waiting for a while now. Hopefully they can turn things around for us. It’s just not one or two games, but I envision a number of years for them to play for India and do well for us.”
India’s latest captains except Anil Kumble wrapped it up by the time they reached Rohit’s age when he begins his captaincy. The last two or three years have been great for him, but it’s safe to say that just 43 Test caps in such a long career is a mediocre comeback. Rohit, however, said he was not aiming at any personal targets.
“What goal should I set for myself? Rohit said. “My goals are set for the team. I don’t think about myself. I’m happy with 40 [Tests]. I have no regrets. Lots of injuries, lots of ups and downs, but it goes on in life and in cricket. You will never get a smooth ride in cricket. The ups and downs will teach you a lot. Now I don’t have any personal goals I have to do this, I have to do that. Ahead of me is a lot of work. I just think we have to do well for the team.”
Sidharth Monga is an associate editor at ESPNcricinfo