Rohit Sharma vs Virender Sehwag: Statistical comparison (as openers)
Virender Sehwag is deemed as one of India's greatest openers across all formats. His fearless and unabashed approach did wonders for India, especially in ODI cricket. After his retirement, the flamboyant Rohit Sharma has truly owned this spot. He seems to be a cut above the rest among opening batsmen in modern-day cricket. Let us compare their numbers as openers in ODI cricket.
Both Sehwag and Rohit started their international careers as middle-order batsmen. Sehwag was given the push by former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly, while MS Dhoni's decision to promote Rohit reaped dividends. In an illustrious career, Sehwag amassed 8,273 runs from 251 ODIs at an average of 35.05. Meanwhile, Rohit has racked up 9,205 runs in 227 ODIs at 48.96, as of now.
Sehwag scored 7,518 runs from 214 ODIs at an average of 36.49 as an opener. Notably, 14 of his total 15 ODI tons were registered while opening the innings. On the other hand, Rohit has already tallied 7,238 runs in 141 innings where he opened. His ODI average as an opener climbs over 55 (57.44). He also owns 27 hundreds in these matches.
Sehwag and Rohit share a common record in the 50-over format as openers. In 2011, Sehwag became only the second batsman after Sachin Tendulkar to slam a double-century in ODI cricket (219 vs WI). Rohit followed Sehwag's footsteps in 2013, having smashed his maiden ODI double-century (209 vs AUS). He registered two more in 2014 (208* vs SL) and 2017 (264 vs SL) respectively.
Both Rohit and Sehwag have similar stats in the 50-over World Cup as openers. In 17 World Cup matches, Rohit has scored 978 runs at a phenomenal average of 65.20. He also has six tons in these matches, joint-most with Tendulkar. Meanwhile, Sehwag recorded 671 runs from 18 WC games at an average of 37.27. The tally includes one ton and three half-centuries.
Sehwag and Rohit have captained Team India in 11 and 10 ODIs respectively. In these matches, the former has scored 395 runs at 35.90 (1 hundred). Besides, Rohit owns 543 runs at a prolific average of 77.57 (2 hundreds).
The fiery starts by Sehwag have resulted in some of India's greatest ODI victories. In 115 such wins, he has aggregated 5,246 runs at 47.26 (13 hundreds). Similarly, Rohit has been one of the consistent match-winners in recent times. He has scored 5,326 runs at a staggering average of 69.16 in winning cause (21 hundreds). Moreover, he averages 67.78 in successful run-chases.