Sharma’s Record Century: India’s Masterstroke in World Cup 2023

Rohit Sharma celebrating his century during World Cup 2023.

Rohit Sharma, the cricket maestro, stepped into the limelight with his jaw-dropping seventh World Cup century, pushing India to a dominant victory over Afghanistan. This feat allowed Sharma to surpass the legendary Sachin Tendulkar’s six centuries, setting a new benchmark in World Cup history.

As the sun graced the skies of New Delhi, a chase of 273 runs loomed over India. But, in an extraordinary play, the hosts rode the tidal wave led by Sharma’s exhilarating score of 131, sealing the match in just 35 overs. This victory marked India’s consecutive triumph in this 50-over prestigious event.

“Special to get a World Cup 100. Very happy about that. Don’t want to think about records too much because I know there’s a long way to go,” said Rohit Sharma, the man of the match.

Sharma’s innings wasn’t just about crossing a century. His fierce gameplay ensured that he touched the landmark in just 63 balls. The speed of this century etched his name above Kapil Dev, whose century in the 1983 World Cup against Zimbabwe took 72 balls.

A Closer Look at Sharma’s Innings

  • World Cup Runs: Crossed the 1,000 mark
  • Sixes: Broke Chris Gayle’s international record with over 553 sixes
  • Gameplay: Hit the ball to every nook and cranny of the field
  • Total Score: 131 off 84 balls, embellished with 16 fours and five sixes

However, every great inning has its end. Sharma’s stellar performance was halted by leg-spinner Rashid Khan.

A Team Effort

Sharma’s brilliance was mirrored in his opening partnership of 156 runs with left-handed Ishan Kishan, who contributed a crucial 47 to the tally. This partnership demonstrated India’s batting dominance, further reinforced by Virat Kohli’s unbeaten 55.

The homecoming game for Delhi-born superstar Kohli ended on a high note, with a boundary shot sealing the match. With Shreyas Iyer’s 25 not out, and the tournament’s most massive six of 101 meters, India’s prowess was on full display.

“I know it’s my responsibility to give the team a good start and put the team in a good position as much as possible. It’s something I’ve done for a while and love,” Rohit Sharma reflected on his role.

Afghanistan’s Effort

Though dominated by India, Afghanistan put up a commendable 272-8 after choosing to bat. This venue had seen a massive 754 runs in the prior match between South Africa and Sri Lanka.

Key Players for AfghanistanScore
Hashmatullah Shahidi80
Azmatullah Omarzai62

India’s pace spearhead, Jasprit Bumrah, showcased his expertise with standout World Cup bowling figures of 4-39. Afghanistan’s innings saw a dip at 63-3, but Shahidi and Omarzai’s partnership of 121 runs brought them back into the game.

India's Victory: Sharma's Fastest Century and Kohli's Rise in ICC Rankings.

Key Moments and Takeaways

  • Bumrah’s Strikes: Capturing Ibrahim Zadran for 22, followed by Rahmanullah Gurbaz at 21, and Rahmat Shah at 16.
  • Afghanistan’s Resistance: Led by left-hander Shahidi and Omarzai’s century stand, challenging India’s bowlers.
  • Falling Short: Despite Shahidi’s consistent boundaries and Omarzai’s aggressive gameplay, Afghanistan couldn’t withstand India’s bowling pressure.

Shahidi, while staying hopeful for the upcoming games, stated, “We have seven more games, looking forward to those games. Hopefully, we learn from our mistakes and we will work on it.”

The Bigger Picture: Rankings and Takeaways

In other news, Virat Kohli climbed two spots in the ICC rankings for batters, reaching the seventh position, following his outstanding 85 against Australia. However, this ranking update did not factor in his recent unbeaten 55 against Afghanistan.

Key Movements in ICC Rankings
Virat Kohli – Moved up to 7th
KL Rahul – Jumped to 19th
Aiden Markram – Rose to 21st

This year’s World Cup has already witnessed ten centuries in its initial eight matches, shaking up the ICC Men’s ODI Batting Rankings. Mohammed Siraj slipped to the second spot in bowler’s rankings, while spinner Kuldeep Yadav climbed three positions to the eighth spot.

World Cup 2023 is turning out to be an event of broken records, stellar performances, and cricketing brilliance. With players like Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli leading the charge, India is undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with in this tournament.

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About the Author

Born in Kolkata in 1987, Rohan Sharma, now a revered betting expert, completed a Master’s in Sports Statistics from the University of Pune in 2012. Between 2013 and 2020, he collaborated with the Indian Cricket Board, focusing on player analytics and game strategy optimization. Sharma has penned 16 academic papers, predominantly addressing the evolution of bowling techniques and field placements. In 2021, he transitioned to journalism. Sharma presently authors analytical articles on cricket, offering insights on match dynamics and player strategies, contributing regularly to various sports-centric platforms.

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