Rohit Sharma made a sensational start to his new role as Test opener, smashing 529 runs in four innings against South Africa. Sharma slammed two hundreds and a double hundred and scored his runs at an average of 132.25 and a strike rate of 77.45. He was named man of the match at Ranchi (212 runs), and man of the series as well.
During his run-scoring spree, Sharma broke many records. He became the first batsman to score hundreds in each innings of his first Test as opener. He also now holds the record for the most sixes in a Test match, most sixes in a Test series as well as the most sixes in 2019.
If that wasn’t enough, Sharma now averages more than Don Bradman in home Tests. While the Don averaged 98.22, Sharma’s average presently stands at 99.84.
He also has to his credit the most runs scored by a batsman in his maiden Test as opener. With his tally of 303 at Visakhapatnam, he left behind Kepler Wessels, who made 208 for Australia against England in 1982-83.
Considering Sharma’s penchant for breaking records, here are three more he can achieve in times to come.
#1 Average of 100 in home Tests
It seems only a matter of time before Sharma achieves this record. In 12 Tests so far he has amassed 1298 runs at an average of 99.84, with six hundreds, five fifties and a duck. He registered his highest of 212 in the Ranchi Test, which is also his career-best score in Tests for now.
Sharma’s average has been bolstered by the five not outs to his name. On current form, and looking at his numbers at home, Sharma touching an average of 100 looks like a formality.
Notably, even Bradman did not end with an average of 100 - either at home or in his overall career. So Sharma is chasing something big for sure.
#2 300 in a single day
This is another record only Bradman has achieved. During the 1930 Test against England at Leeds, the Aussie legend blasted 309 in a single day. He ended up making 334 from 448 balls.
Wally Hammond also came mighty close when he made 295 runs in a day for England against New Zealand, at Auckland in 1933.
The nearest an Indian came to making 300 runs in a day was when Virender Sehwag blazed his way to 284 at Mumbai, against Sri Lanka in 2009. Sehwag eventually fell for 293 the next day.
With his ability to play long innings, and his love for hitting sixes, Sharma could possibly achieve what Sehwag narrowly missed out on.
#3 200 in T20Is
Despite T20 cricket being in existence for nearly a decade and a half now, we are yet to see a double hundred in the shortest format of the game.
The current record holder is Australia’s ODI captain Aaron Finch, who smashed 172 from 76 balls (with 16 fours and 10 sixes) in a 2018 T20 against Zimbabwe at Harare. The next best is Hazratullah Zazai’s scintillating 162 from 62 deliveries for Afghanistan against Ireland, at Dehradun in February 2019.
Sharma knows a thing or two about double centuries, having smashed a record three in ODIs. In fact, he holds the record for the highest individual score by an Indian in T20s - 118 from 43 balls against Sri Lanka at Indore in 2017. Sharma rocketed away at an unbelievable strike rate of 274.41 during the innings.
Of all Indian batsmen, if there is one player who is most likely to get to 200 in T20Is, it is Sharma. The fact that he opens the innings also gives him an added advantage.