Recalling his days under the tutelage of Rahul Dravid, Prithvi Shaw has admitted that the Indian legend knew exactly what and how to get the best out of the team during U-19 tours. He also stated that never once during his U-19 days did Dravid ask him to curb his natural instinct and game.
Under former Indian skipper and arguably one of India’s most tactical brains, Rahul Dravid, the Indian U-19 team was at the peak of international age-group cricket. Not only were India unbeaten in an entire World Cup (2018), they won their games in convincing fashion every time they stepped onto the field. In the final too, they notched up an impressive win over Australia by eight wickets with 11 overs remaining.
India’s U-19 skipper back then, Prithvi Shaw, in a conversation with Harsha Bhogle, admitted that the then U-19 head coach, Dravid, knew exactly what to get from the youngsters during the age-group tours. Alongside that, Shaw also revealed that Dravid always asked him to back his natural game and be there for the team.
"I am sure he also went through that phase, the under-19s and Ranji Trophy. He knew exactly what to get from us during tours," Shaw told Cricbuzz.
"He used to talk to every guy specifically about what he wanted him to do, which was really interesting. For me, he just used to say, play your natural game but if the situation demands, you need to be there for the team. If the situation is asking you to do something different from your game, you have to do it for the team. I really found Rahul sir interesting in that way, a great human being as well," he added.
Shaw is hailed as arguably one of the best free-flowing batsmen in India since the retirement of Virender Sehwag. On a constant basis, there have been parallels drawn between the two, owing to Shaw’s aggressive nature in the powerplay overs. The 21-year-old stated that the former Indian skipper was very different from the team but he never forced them to be like him.
In addition, Shaw also mentioned that he never asked his players to change their attitude or temperament and insisted that he gave him full freedom to play his natural game in the powerplay.
"It was exceptional. We had toured for about two years (before the 2018 under-19 World Cup) with Rahul sir. He knew that he was different from us but he never forced us to be like him. Temperament is important but he never asked me to change anything, he used to tell me to play my natural game because he knew that if I play the powerplay overs, it becomes difficult to dismiss me," Shaw concluded.