The 27-year-old opener has been a prolific run scorer in the domestic circuit, for his state side Karnataka, and also the Rahul Dravid-coached India "A"
Bengaluru: At 8.44 pm on Saturday night, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), on its Twitter account, announced the Indian Test squad for the two-match home series against the West Indies. Soon after, many celebrated one player's maiden call-up.
It was Mayank Agarwal.
The 27-year-old opener has been a prolific run scorer in the domestic circuit, for his state side Karnataka, and also the Rahul Dravid-coached India "A".
As expected, former cricketers and fans hailed the selectors’ decision and took to social media to praise the batsman.
After years of hard work and toil, the Bengaluru lad has finally moved a step closer to don the India Test cap. His name was the most debated, thanks to his eye-catching performances. Now, he has replaced the out-of-form Shikhar Dhawan in the 15-man squad.
On Saturday, Mayank had again served notice to the MSK Prasad-led selection committee, with a 111-ball 90 for the Board President's XI against West Indies in the two-day warm-up match in Vadodara.
Minutes after the squad was unveiled by BCCI, Mayank's phone was inundated with congratulatory messages and calls. His phone was busy and amid this, the right-handed batsman answered MyNation's call for a quick chat on Saturday night.
"It feels amazing. I am very happy and excited. I am looking forward to play against the West Indies," Mayank told MyNation when asked about his first reaction to the much-awaited news.
For every cricketer, it is a dream to represent the nation in the Test format. When asked about whether it was his cricket career's "biggest day", Mayank replied, "I would like to take it day by day. I can't say this is the biggest day. This is not the biggest day but it is definitely a big day for me."
So far, Mayank has played 43 first-class matches since debut in 2013, scoring 3,372 runs at an average of 50.32. He has scored eight hundreds and 18 fifties with a highest of 304 not out.
When he started playing cricket, Mayank modelled his batting on former India opener Virender Sehwag.
Initially branded as a limited overs specialist, Mayank has proved his worth in the four-day format too as he emerged as the highest run scorer in Ranji Trophy 2017-18 season with 1,160 runs from 13 visits to the crease at an incredible average of 105.45.
In last November, in just 28 days, he amassed a record 1,033 runs in Ranji Trophy. Not only this, he stacked up over 2,000 runs, also a record, across formats, last season.
Now, he wants to continue to bat the same way if he gets an opportunity to play against West Indies. The first Test starts in Rajkot on October 4 followed by the second and final one from October 12 in Hyderabad.
"I am just going to do whatever I have been doing. I will stick to whatever has been working for me and go out there and try and give my best for India," Mayank said.
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Last Updated Sep 30, 2018, 1:50 PM IST