‘I am not at a stage to worry about whether I’ll be picked or not’

India’s limited-overs run-machine Rohit Sharma says there is no point fretting over his start-stop Test career as “half” of his playing days are over. Rohit now just wants to enjoy the remainder of his playing career.
“There’s limited time you have as a player and I have finished almost half of it. There’s no point in spending the remaining half thinking whether I’ll be picked or not. I am going forward with the theory of ‘whatever time I have, make it count’,” Rohit told PTI, referring to his below-par record in international red-ball cricket.
Despite possessing an impressive record in limited-overs cricket, including three ODI double-hundreds, Rohit has failed to click in the longest format of the game, scoring just 1479 runs at an average of 39.97 from the 25 Tests he has played. Following an inconsistent show in South Africa at the start of 2018, Rohit was left out of India’s squad for the one-off Test against Afghanistan in Bengaluru, starting June 14. He doesn’t have any complaints, saying he is at a stage of his career where he can’t think about selection.
“For me, I am not at a stage to worry about whether I’ll be picked or not. I need to enjoy my game. The first five-six years of my career, it was all about ‘oh, will I be picked? Will I play?’ Now it’s all about enjoying the game. These things keeps adding pressure on you. Instead it’s best to enjoy yourself in what you do and give your best.
“I got into the national team when I was 20 and I made my Test debut when I was 26. I had an opportunity to make my debut in 2010, but I missed that [due to a freak injury while warming up on the morning of the match]. After that, it made me realise that the more you want, your attitude changes. I have realised there’s a time for everything.
“There has to be time and a slot available for it. The seniors – Sachin [Tendulkar], Rahul [Dravid], VVS [Laxman] and Sourav [Ganguly] – were all playing then, so we had to wait. After a point, I realised there’s no point thinking about it. No point in thinking about what the selectors are doing and all.”
Asked whether he was surprised by his axing from the Test squad for the Afghanistan match, he replied: “I was not. As I said, I can only keep enjoying my game. There’s no time to regret anything. I’ve had enough time to regret in the past. We have got big events coming up, so best to focus on it.”
Rohit also didn’t have the best IPL this season while leading Mumbai Indians, failing to take his side to the playoffs.
And the flamboyant right-hander admitted that he failed to live up to his own expectations with the bat.
“A disappointing campaign without a doubt. I said many a times during the season that this team was much, much better. I think we had a much better squad than most of the other teams who went on to qualify also. But again, we have ourselves to blame for it.
We made too many mistakes,” he said.