World Cup is long, long way away, let's focus on present: Rohit Sharma
Mumbai: The Indian team might be treating every bilateral T20 assignment as an audition for next year's World Cup but vice-captain Rohit Sharma prefers to focus on the present instead of losing sleep over a marquee event, which is still 10 months away.
India will lock horns with two-time world T20 champions in the series-deciding third match here even as the efforts to find the right combination for the marquee event continue.
"See, I don't want to keep saying that we are trying to build a squad for the (T20)World Cup. It is still a long, long way ahead. We just need to focus on winning the series and that will keep us in good state, moving forward," Rohit said on Tuesday ahead of the series-finale.
"If we keep winning games, keep doing the right things on the field, the composition of the team will take care (of itself)," Rohit added.
The stylish batsman then gave his rationale for why he wants to take one series at a time.
"We are playing against a quality team and hereafter Sri Lanka is coming, then we go to New Zealand and thereafter there are a lot of T20s to focus on. If we focus on the present, that will help us more than anything else.
"Right now, we need to see what are the mistakes we are making so that when we come out and play every fresh game, we look like a different side."
Talk about chasing, Rohit agreed that India have been better while batting second compared to defending totals as one found out in the first two games in Hyderabad (won while chasing) and Thuiruvananthapuram (lost while defending).
"Yes, of late our chasing has been good compared to posting targets. It was a good target that we posted but again it's a new set of guys.
"There are a lot of inexperienced players along with experienced players but that is what every T20 team now has, bit of inexperience, along with that some experience. Those two elements need to come together to form a very composition (composite) side."
He gave West Indies credit for chasing a target of 171 on a slow track.
"When you talk about setting targets, on that pitch (in 2nd T20 Intl), a target of 170 plus (171) looked decent. When we started batting, the wicket was on the slower side, the shot-making was not that easy although the West Indies made it look very easy."
At an individual level, Rohit's own approach remains the same irrespective of whether the team bats first or chases a target.
"My batting doesn't change whether we are batting first or chasing. Obviously, the first few balls, I want to see what the pitch is doing, what are the shots I can play on the pitch those are the things I like to assess when we are batting first.
"When we were chasing in 207 in Hyderabad, even then we just wanted to play a few balls to get used to the pace of the pitch. It also depends on how your partner is batting. It's very, very important that you complement your partner," he assessed.
Brian Lara had recently said that unpredictability makes West Indies a scary team but Rohit didn't want to go that far.
"I wouldn't say I am not sure of many teams but we are not scared of any team. Like I said they were good on that day and won the game, as simple as that. We were not good.
- By Nikhil Bapat