India will begin a new page in their T20I cricketing history when they step onto the field at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium, Jaipur on November 17 for the first of the three T20Is against New Zealand. While it will not be the first match for Rahul Dravid as the head coach of the senior boys, the match will also mark the first T20I as captain for Rohit Sharma as full-time captain.
The two will have to race against time as India look to end their ICC trophy drought of recent years with the T20 World Cup in less than a year's time in Australia. Meanwhile, a nine-year-old tweet from the Hitman on captaincy has gone viral hours before his first game after taking over the shortest-format captaincy from Virat Kohli.
"Touched down in Jaipur, and yes I will be leading the side, looking forward to the added responsibility," Sharma had tweeted 9 years ago on November 7, 2012. Notably, Rohit had tweeted this referring to himself going to lead the Mumbai side in a Ranji Trophy match at the KL Saini Ground.
Check out the tweet:
Interestingly, the Jaipur match was also his maiden Ranji Trophy match as captain and coincidentally, Rohit is once again in the Pink City and will be leading the Indian cricket team for the first time as a full-time captain in the same city and in the same month of the year, nine years later.
Ahead of the match, Rohit said that the team needed to find their own template in T20 cricket if they wanted to be looked at as a successful side.
"Template is a very important one and we need to set it right. We’ve got some time to do that. India has been brilliant in this format, it’s just that we haven’t won the ICC tournament. We’ve played well and performed well as a team,” Rohit said at the presser.
"I am not going to say that we’re going to follow a certain team’s template. We have to create our own template, see what’s best and right for tour team," the 34-year-old added.
"We strictly want to assign roles that we want them to do because at the end of the day what they do here matters. It can take a while or it can happen in a few games as well. To give them that long rope or confidence is important to perform their role to perfection. We’re starting afresh after the World Cup and we’ve set some ideas and thoughts for this series now. Let’s see how that pans out and we’ll take it from there," he stated.