'Want to get into the phase I was before 2019 World Cup' - Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma is keeping the pressure and the weight of expectations at arm's length even as the next two months present the stiffest challenge of his captaincy tenure, with success or failure at the Asia Cup and 2023 World Cup both set to define his days at the helm of affairs.
The Indian captain knows he and his team have the opportunity to make amends with the World Cup triumph in home conditions after facing constant criticism and negativity over inconsistent results in the past 18 months alongside coach Rahul Dravid.
Giving countrymen the coveted prize will shut the naysayers up; equally, another failed attempt to break the longstanding ICC trophy jinx will sharpen the knives and may fasten the exit of a couple of major names from the senior team set-up.
Rohit is aware he will be at the forefront of repercussions aged 36 if he and his team don't deliver the goods. But the experienced head believes a strong headspace and balanced frame of mind would help him pass him with flying colours in the mould he did individually at the 2019 World Cup.
Rohit Sharma eyeing 2019 "phase" at the World Cup
Speaking to PTI in an interview from India's ongoing six-day NCA camp in Bangalore prior to the Asia Cup, starting August 30, Rohit Sharma said the personal goal is to hit the right note within his mind as he knows the rest would follow seamlessly.
Rohit wants to enter the 2019 "phase" at the forthcoming World Cup and bat with the great clarity and command he did in his pomp to make five hundreds and finish as the tournament's highest run-getter in England.
"For me, it is important how I keep myself relaxed and not worry about external factors that play a role, whether positively or not negatively. I want to shut out everything," Rohit said, highlighting the importance of shutting the outside noise.
"I want to get into the phase I was in before the 2019 World Cup. I was in great frame of mind and prepared really well for the tournament. I was in good shape, good mindset. I want to bring that back and I have time to do that."
"Trying to recollect what were the right things that I was doing before the 2019 World Cup as a cricketer and as a person. I want to revisit that thought-process of mine personally," he added.