Rahul Dravid is getting positive vibes from current Indian cricket team. The former India skipper feels Virat Kohli and men have a decent chance to clinch India's first Test series victory in South Africa.
The Indian team will play just one warm-up match before the Test series.
Dravid thinks Indians are good in all aspects and actually possess a threat to the hosts. “I think we have a great chance this time looking at the depth of the current side,” he told PTI. “We have got some quality quicks, we have the opportunity of playing the all-rounder (Hardik Pandya) if we need to. We have got quality spinners in Jadeja and Ashwin. What also excites me is that all our batsmen have been to South Africa before and they have the experience of 40-50 Tests."
“Having said that, you do need a bit of luck in those conditions, bit of rub of the green. If we get that, I am very confident about our chances,” said Dravid, who is currently coaching the U-19 and India A sides," Dravid added.
Indian cricket team has played a lot of cricket in last 2 years and Dravid said it will be good to take the extra load off the players’ shoulders. Indian skipper Virat Kohli had taken rest before the major tour next year. Rohit Sharma is leading the side for limited overs series against Sri Lanka.
“Some years are tough (schedule wise) for the team and some are not. There is a lot of pressure on players but that is same for all teams. But it will be nice if we can balance the schedule though it is not an easy job.”
Rahul Dravid also answered what separates Kohli from others. “The intensity that he brings on the field to inspire his teammates is what stands out for me,” he said.
Recently, the India U-19 squad had a forgettable Asia Cup. After a disastrous campaign, Dravid wants to look ahead to the World Cup starting in New Zealand from January 13.
Asked what went wrong at the Asia Cup, Dravid said: “Not much. At this level, you are not looking at the results. They are young kids and sometimes you expect the results to not go your way.
“The U-19 level is all about giving opportunities to as many players as possible. That was the process we followed in the Asia Cup. I don’t stress too much on results. We are looking forward to the World Cup now and the three-week camp ahead of that starts in Bengaluru tomorrow.”
Prithvi Shah has done amazingly well in this year's Ranji Trophy playing for Mumbai. It was a collective decision by Dravid and selectors to make him play the Ranji Trophy than the Asia Cup.
“We took a decision, a right decision that the boys who are playing Ranji Trophy should be allowed to play that. With U-19, what we are trying to move the players from junior level to the Ranji level and then hopefully the Indian team,” said Dravid, defending the decision to exclude Shaw from the Asia Cup squad.
“The faster they get the opportunity, that is the real goal. Nothing would make me happier if they go on to play for India A.”
However, Shaw will be back to lead the India U-19 in the World Cup next month.
Asked if Shaw is ready to play for India considering the success he has at the First-Class level, Dravid said: “I don’t want to make that moment. He is a good player, he has started his season well but selectors will take a call on his future.”