Rohit Sharma in Tests: Superstar at home, not so much overseas

Rohit Sharma showed with his sumptuous 161 run knock in the second test match against England in Chennai that when on song, he is a cut above the rest.

The moment Rohit Sharma takes guard on Indian pitches, regardless of the format of the match or the colour of the ball, he is an absolute superstar. While there is little doubt that he is already a legend in white ball cricket with close to 10000 runs in ODIs from 224 matches, Sharma is more than a handful in test cricket as well.

From 26 innings in test cricket at home, Rohit Sharma has scored 1621 runs at an average of over 80 while striking at 68.60. He has scored 7 centuries and 6 half centuries in this duration while getting dismissed for a duck only once, with the best of 212.

While Sharma is close to unstoppable at home, the case is a lot different in overseas conditions. In the 37 away innings that Rohit has played in test cricket, he has scored six half centuries but has only managed 945 runs at an ordinary average of 27. His strike rate also drops to 40 7.95.

While Rohit Sharma's overall average of 46.67 after making 2566 runs from 63 test innings is quite good, the record is a heavily skewed one. His struggles against swinging and seaming deliveries were recorded in the first phase of his career in test cricket. Still, he can be given the benefit of doubt in his latest wind as a test cricketer.

It is also to be noted that in the first part of his test career Rohit batted in the middle order. As a result, he often came out to bat when the bowlers were on top with either conventional swing or reverse swing at play. With him batting at number 5 or number 6, there were times when he was up against the second new ball as well which made it very difficult for him.

Taking his temperament into account as well, he is better suited to open the batting and start on a fresh slate rather than have the burden of the scoreboard on the back of his mind.

In the four test innings that he played as an opener recently in Australia, he shaped up well and also got good starts but either threw his wicket away or the bowling proved just too good to counter. That said, he has shown enough promise to assume that he will improve his numbers away from home if he continues to get consistent chances.