World Cup 2019: Hitman Rohit Sharma breaks World Cup record, leads India to win

Updated: Jul 07, 2019, 07:44 IST | Santosh Suri |

The story of this World Cup may well become the story of Rohit. He has potentially two more matches to break a few more records, and if that happens and India go on to win the World Cup, his feat will be a big cherry on the cake.

Rohit Sharma celebrates his century against Sri Lanka at Headingley in Leeds on Saturday. Pic /Bipin Patel
Rohit Sharma celebrates his century against Sri Lanka at Headingley in Leeds on Saturday. Pic /Bipin Patel

Leeds: Rohit Sharma has made this World Cup his own. The Hit-Man, as he is fondly called, became the only batsman to score five centuries in a single edition when he notched up a brilliant 103 against Sri Lanka at Headingley on Saturday, his third three-figure score on the trot. He also equalled Sachin Tendulkar's record of most hundreds in World Cup history (six in 44 innings), by scoring his sixth in just 16 games.

The story of this World Cup may well become the story of Rohit. He has potentially two more matches to break a few more records, and if that happens and India go on to win the World Cup, his feat will be a big cherry on the cake.

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Opting to bat, Sri Lanka had managed 264-7, which was never going to be enough with the type of form the Indian top-order is in. Once Rohit and KL Rahul (111) put on 189 for the opening wicket, the result became a foregone conclusion. And so it proved as India notched up a seven-wicket win to end the league phase with seven wins, one defeat to England and a washout against New Zealand. Whether India will finish on top or in the second spot and play their semi-final at Manchester or Birmingham will be decided by the result of the final league game between Australia and South Africa. If Australia lose that game, India will play New Zealand in the last-four clash in Manchester on July 9.

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If Sri Lanka were able to post a challenging total, they owed it to Angelo Matthews, who notched up his third ODI century (113), all scored against India, to revive the innings after they had lost four cheap wickets. Mathews and Lahiru Thirimanne (53) ensured that the Indian team would require a decent effort to win the last league game and go into the semi-finals on a winning momentum.

The Double R's, Rohit and Rahul, were on a song once again, batting fluently from the beginning. The way they were able to cart the ball round made the bowling look pedestrian. There was a period when it seemed the two could finish the game on their own, having put on their third century partnership. But not for the first time, Rohit lost his wicket soon after getting to the coveted mark. Thereafter, Rahul went on to get his first century in the World Cup while skipper Virat Kohli (34*) had a decent hit.

Brief scores

Sri Lanka 264-7 in 50 overs (A Mathews 113, L Thirimanne 53; J Bumrah 3-37) lost to India 265-3 in 43.3 overs (KL Rahul 111, Rohit 103; K Rajitha 1-47) by 7 wickets

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