Even as the cricketing world gears up to get back to the action without fans with an eye on the coronavirus pandemic, Indias limited-overs vice-captain Rohit Sharma has made no bones about the fact that the spectators are an integral part of representing the national team and winning games.
Speaking on Star Sports show Cricket Connected, Rohit spoke about the day he realised the importance of fans.
Rohit Sharma speaks on the motivation the Indian cricket team gets from fans
Rohit said on the show, "You never realize you're playing for the Indian cricket team until you witness the support of the fans. I still remember when we won against Australia in the semi-final in 2007, our hotel was full of fans and they were all celebrating and dancing, I couldn't believe my eyes as I hadn't seen anything like this before.
"You always see fans in the stadium but that day at the hotel seeing all of those supporters I felt that it is the fans' passion and love that keeps the team going."
Earlier, Robin Uthappa had praised Rohit and Virat Kohli saying that while Rohit seems to have an eternity while facing the bowlers, Kohli stands out because of the way he can change gears from one format to the other.
"When I look at Rohit, I feel he has got eternity to play a ball. It just baffles you like where does he create that time. It's amazing to watch and so effortless. Even Virat for that matter, when you watch him bat from one version of the game to another, you can see how clearly, he has planned for each version of the game. In one-day cricket, he almost never hits the ball in the air, unless it's completely required during the course of the game.
"Similarly, in Test cricket, he is only going to hit the ball in the air once he has passed 120 or 150. But in T20 cricket, he pulls out the big shots and his orthodox big shots that you don't even think that he will play it, because you have seen him play so much of good cricket along the ground in ODI & Test cricket that you don't anticipate him playing that. Suddenly, the bowlers have to plan for each version of the game," he said.