Rohit Sharma emerges as World Cup leader with landmark ton

The Indian opener now trails only Sachin Tendulkar for the most centuries in the tournament's history.

Photo: BCCI/Twitter

Rohit Sharma equaled Kumar Sangakkara's record of scoring four centuries in a single World Cup and also emerged as the highest run-scorer in the current edition of the tournament with his latest ton against Bangladesh at Birmingham on Tuesday.

Batting first, India got off to a flying start thanks to a 180-run opening stand between Sharma and KL Rahul with the Mumbai lad bringing up his fifty in 45 balls and his hundred in 90. He scored 7 fours and 5 sixes before perishing for 104 in 92 balls, his second successive ton, third straight in Birmingham and the 26th of his career.

"I have been watching it for years now," said captain Virat Kohli. "He's the best One Day player around and we are so delighted to see him. When he plays like that, everybody is happy to see him strike this so well."

With his latest knock, he became the first Indian and only the second player to score four hundreds in a single World Cup. He currently has five tons in the tournament in just 15 matches, matching Ricky Ponting's tally, and trailing only Sachin Tendulkar who has six. In this year's World Cup, Sharma has scored centuries against England, Pakistan and South Africa.

"I had a great feeling right at the start," said Sharma, declared Man of the Match. "It's a great pitch to bat on... Once you are set, the idea is to put pressure on the bowlers.

His innings also meant that he now leads the run-scorers tally for the current World Cup with 544 in just seven games, surpassing David Warner's 516 which the Australian managed in eight matches.

Sharma, an ARCS Andheri pick in the inaugural season of T20 Mumbai, now also holds the record for hitting the most sixes by an Indian in One Day Internationals, surpassing MS Dhoni's tally.

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