Former England off-spinner Graeme Swann felt ‘absolute joy’ while watching Rohit Sharma bat against Kings XI Punjab in Abu Dhabi on Thursday. The Mumbai Indians skipper was a standout performer for Swann during his innings of 70 runs in 45 balls, where he hit eight boundaries and three sixes and took MI to the top of the IPL 2020 points table.
In the post-match show, Swann told Star Sports: “It’s Rohit Sharma (stand out player). He is beautiful to watch and you know he is going to come good. Even though he is not the super-thin Rohit Sharma that he was 5-10 years ago, he is still doing it.”
“He is an old guard now. Most of these young guys would have grown up with posters of him on their walls, they are now battling with him. He is an absolute joy to watch when in good form.”
Rohit laid the foundation for Mumbai’s 191/4 against Punjab with his stability at top of the order. While his 70-run knock gave MI a solid start, Kieron Pollard and Hardik Pandya came out all guns blazing to leave KXIP with a mountain to climb.
During this game, Rohit got into the elite club of 5000 runs in the Indian Premier League, where Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina are already sitting comfortably.
Former Indian batting coach Sanjay Bangar was also quick in praising Rohit Sharma for his staller batting show and compared him with a pianist. “He was taking a threat to his needle, such was his timing, such was his placement. Not a single shot where you could say he was not timing it. His notes were beautiful, like a pianist,” Bangar said.
Apart from Rohit, Pollard and Pandya’s blitz, MI’s pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah found his mojo back after an ordinary outing against Royal Challengers Bangalore. He registered figures of 2 for 18 in his four overs, where he dismissed last match’s centurion Mayank Agarwal for 23 before removing James Neesham at the death. Swann backed Bumrah to have a big IPL after his initial troubles in the IPL 2020.
“Class is permanent and that’s been showing tonight. He did not have a great start to the tournament. But even the best players in the world, trust me they need a bit of confidence. He will be brilliant now. I predict a big, big IPL from this point for Jasprit Bumrah,” Swann further added.