Aggression is Shaw's mantra

Aggression is Shaw's mantra

ON SONG Mumbai's Pruthvi Shaw sends one to the fence en route his century against Railways in the Vijay Hazare Trophy match at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday. DH Photo/ B H Shivakumar

Prithvi Shaw produced many ‘wow’ moments en route his maiden List A century for Mumbai here at the Chinnaswamy stadium on Sunday. It’s not just the two fifties and one ton that has put him in the limelight in the ongoing Vijay Hazare Trophy. It’s his relentless aggression – which outsmarted an experienced attack like Karnataka’s two days ago – that has impacted Mumbai's fortunes positively.

Shaw, who made 97 and 60 against Baroda and Karnataka respectively, hammered the ordinary Railways bowling to notch an 81-ball 129-run knock. Some of the shots, like the single-handed cut for six over third-man or the front foot pull to the stands, speak volumes of Shaw’s self-confidence. The 18-year-old seems to bat with only one mindset – to attack from the word go.

“It’s all about confidence,” began Shaw in an interaction with reporters post his team’s 173-run win. “Even if the first ball of the game is a bouncer and I am confident, I will pull it. I am not scared of getting out. I just like to dominate the bowlers and put them on the back foot. For me, the score board needs to be ticking. I don’t like the score to be stagnant for a long time,” he explained.

With gifted hand-eye coordination, the cuts and the back-foot punches come naturally to Shaw. But this season, Shaw seems to have added more shots to his repertoire, especially on the front foot. “I am watching the ball closely. My time with India ‘A’ and IPL has helped me prepare for different formats. It’s important to leave balls in the longer format while sometimes in the limited overs, if the wicket is seaming, then I am patient for three-four overs,” he said.

Thanks to his excellent consistency, Shaw was picked in the Indian squad for the final two Tests in England recently. Though he didn’t make his debut, Shaw said it was a great experience. “I was excited and a bit nervous. When you see legends in the dressing room and when you are part of it, it obviously feels good. The way they handled me, they spoke to me in a really nice manner. I felt happy that they helped me with my batting. They told me that there is no junior or senior in the team. That kind of atmosphere motivates you a lot,” he recollected.