"He became a leader in the Deccan Chargers team. When he came in the first year, he was a youngster who just played the T20 World Cup, made his international debut for India," Laxman told Star Sports show 'Cricket Connected'.
"I think the way he was batting in the middle order, under pressure because the team didn't do well in the inaugural IPL edition in 2008 ... Rohit was a standout performer for us."
Rohit is placed third in the list of most run-getters in IPL history, having scored 4898 runs in 188 matches at an average of 31.60 with a highest score of 109 not out.
"In each and every match, with each and every success, his confidence level was just growing, he was getting into the core group, helping the youngsters, voicing his opinion and those were early signs," Laxman said.
"But for me, most importantly was handling the pressure because not once in those tough situations when he was batting did it show, and he has evolved and blossomed. That's why he's one of the most successful captains in IPL history.
IPL winners list: