CHENNAI: Skipper Prithvi Shaw invited various comments — most of which cannot be published here — from the Australian fielders during both his knocks at the Under-19 World Cup. However, there was one positive comment during his knock of 94 against the same opposition in their group stage game.
The 18-year-old stroked an almost flawless off-drive for four. His bat position was right from the coaching manual and Ian Bishop, who was on air, summed up the sentiments in three words. “That is (Sachin) Tendulkar”. People echoed similar sentiments on social media.
It’s easy for young turks to get carried away by comparisons like those — many have, in fact, fallen by the wayside after being given the tag of the next
So how is Shaw handling the pressure? If his words are anything to go by, pretty well. Heck, he even managed to refer Tendulkar as a ‘God of cricket’ to win a few fans.
“Expectations will be there from outside the field and everyone,” he told select reporters after Mumbai’s Vijay Hazare match against Tamil Nadu on Thursday. “Obviously people will compare (me) with Sachin sir or anyone else. But I know my game and I better be grounded because he is (a) God of cricket. I have not even started and he played international cricket for more than 20 years.”
That journey, he hopes, will lead to a few India caps in the near future but he doesn’t yet know whether he is ready. “I don’t know,” he said. “I think so... I have to keep scoring runs. Opportunities milega (I will get my chance). I have to grab those to be there in the senior team.”
The 18-year-old, who was a bit reluctant to talk to the media at first (he had to be cajoled by the team manager), also revealed an interesting insight into the Rahul Dravid school of coaching. “He didn’t talk much about technique... he spent time talking about the mental aspects. He helped on the mental side.”
It’s obvious that those sessions have rubbed off on the most famous teenager in the country at present.