Mayank Agarwal is living every domestic cricketer’s dream. He is set to be the opening batsman for the India – South Africa Test Series that will be held on October 2 in Visakhapatnam. This will be the first test match that he will play on home turf. From proving his mettle in Australia to maintaining his stride in West Indies, Mayank Agarwal has climbed the ladder of success quickly and with a lot of hard work. 

He told Times of India, “Playing at home is always special and I’m looking forward to the series. There was a lot I learnt in Australia, there was even more learning in the West Indies. I’m working on what I’ve learnt and I’m eager to go out and put those lessons to use against South Africa and have a good series at home.”

But his learning curve was not all rainbows and unicorns. He told the newspaper, “From having a good start to my international career in Australia to facing West Indies in their backyard, totally different from what I expected or thought. I have come to understand international cricket is baptism by fire. There are times when things go your way, then there are other times when the going gets tough. That’s international cricket and overcoming those obstacles and coming into your own I think is the challenge.”

During the Caribbean Tour, one of the most iconic moments that shaped the 28-year old opener is credited to Virat Kohli. The unprecedented energy Kohli brought to the field charged Agarwal too. He recounts to the publication, “Virat came into bat about half hour before lunch. The first thing we spoke about was getting a partnership going. We said, ‘Let’s not take any chance, let’s hold on to both ends till lunch and then come out.’ So, we were tight and cautious.”

He adds, “After lunch, Virat went bang, bang, bang and suddenly upped the ante. What I took from Virat’s batting is intensity and mindset in terms of how he looks at and reads situations. He also brings in a lot of energy. He is the guy at the forefront, leading by example. There were so many guys doing the job well, Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane), (Hanuma) Vihari. It is great to be involved with a team like this.”

In the World Test Championships rankings, India is leading with 120 points. Can Mayank Agrawal up the ante and move India up higher on the board?

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