“I feel very blessed, very grateful right now. Last two and a half years have taught me a lot. I’m going to turn 34 in November, so celebrations [on getting to landmarks] are all [a thing of] the past. I have put a lot of things in perspective and, actually, I was a bit shocked because this was the format I least expected a century to come in any time soon, but it’s all God’s blessings. I have been working hard and this was just a moment which was very special for me and the team as well.
“It [the thoughts running through his head] was an accumulation of a lot of things. As I said, when I came back into the team [after a break], the team’s been really open and welcoming and helpful, given me space to work on my game. I know there was a lot of stuff going on on the outside but they really kept my perspective right.
“And I kissed my ring [on a chain around his neck] in the celebration as well. You see me standing here like this right now because [of] all the things that have been put in perspective [and] have been done by one person, who stood by me through all these difficult times – that’s [his wife] Anushka [Sharma] and this hundred is specially dedicated to her and our little daughter Vamika as well.
“Six weeks off, I was refreshed, I understood after taking a break how tired actually I was mentally and physically. Your competitiveness doesn’t allow you to take that call, but I think it was a blessing in disguise for me”
“As I said, [it helps] when you have someone next to you putting the things in right perspective like I have [had], and Anushka has been by my side through all these times…