Following the triumphant Under-19 World Cup as a captain and a batsman earlier this year, Prithvi Shaw’s career graph has been on the upward curve. He fetched an IPL contract with Delhi Daredevils for INR 1.20 crores and impressed one and all by scoring 245 runs from 9 matches in the cash-rich event.
Shaw recently toured England for India ‘A’ and aggregated 603 runs in 10 innings. Subsequently, the 18-year-old was named in India’s senior squad for the last two Tests against England. Although Prithvi didn’t get a chance in England, he is all set to make his Test debut against West Indies at Rajkot on October 4.
Ahead of Shaw’s maiden Test match, former India opener Sunil Gavaskar has said that the debut of Mumbai’s teenage prodigy will have people on the edge of their seats.
"There is a lot of excitement because everybody likes to see a new star in the making. Because people anticipate another 10, 12, 15 years of cricket ahead," Gavaskar told India Today.
"The anticipation is also because of the way he plays. He is a natural stroke player so that's exciting. Clearly when he walks out to bat there will be people sitting on the edge of their seats. And there will be some who will be nervous for the 18-year-old. But most will be anticipating fireworks from him," he added.
Windies have some young fast bowlers in their ranks but Shaw did score a century in England this year against the West Indies ‘A’ outfit that had some bowlers from the current squad.
"That's a big plus to have played at pretty much the level of Test cricket. What separates men from boys in Test cricket is temperament. As a batsman, you tend to get a few more scoreable deliveries at the lower level, whether it is Ranji Trophy or for the A team or the Under-19s. At the Test level, you do not get boundary very often... you may get them in a couple of overs. So you need a little bit more patience and have better shot selection early on," Gavaskar opined.
India’s next overseas Test assignment is in Australia and the fans of Indian cricket would certainly have high hopes of their next batting superstar.
"I hope he succeeds because what India at the moment is looking for is an opening pair. Shikhar Dhawan unfortunately despite being in red hot form in limited overs cricket is not quite amongst the runs in red ball cricket. With KL Rahul also looking to find his place, if both Rahul and Shaw combine well and get India off to a good start that will be half the problems solved. Because Australia will be different; the attack, pitch and conditions. But at least we will have taken a step forward," Gavaskar concluded.