Under-19 cricket holds a great significance in Indian cricket circle. U-19 Cricket is the first step towards stardom and International Cricket for the youngsters. They learn a good amount of match pressure and their abilities to cope with the pressure throughout the U-19 World Cup campaign.
It’s such a kind of battleground, where the all raw diamonds are kept in place, with a challenge to not only outshine others but to also fight with his roughness in the mean-time. World Cricket has seen many a cricketer, coming directly from U-19 and rising to the stature of international cricket in no time. Indian Captain, Virat Kohli and Yuvraj Singh are the greatest examples of that.
Another World Cup winning U-19 star, Riyan Parag, is one of the newest crops of Indian cricketers turning up for the team in 2018 under-19 World Cup and hogging the timelines with his rich in cricketing stories. At 16, Riyan Parag was already a world cup hero, having played a significant role in India’s successful Under-19 triumph in the 2018 World Cup.
Riyan, the Right handed batsman and a useful leg-break bowler, soon grabbed the eyeballs of IPL franchises and he was awarded with an IPL contract at the 2019 auctions when Rajasthan Royals picked him up for 20 Lakh.
Soon, he was donning the Rajasthan Royals outfit in the World’s greatest Cricket League. With the outfit also came the huge pressure of performing and holding the nerves at crucial junctures, this is where Riyan Parag concurred the battle as he shown great temperament and ability to blossom under the pressure. In his debut IPL season, Parag scored 160 runs in five innings with a strike rate of 127.
In an exclusive chat with Sportskeeda, the Rajasthan Royals youngster talked about the feeling when he grabbed the IPL deal. “When the Royals signed me, I feel it was a dream come true and I was delighted because the IPL is one of the cricket’s biggest leagues in the world. Getting picked by the Royals, the inaugural season winners, was a surreal feeling,” said the youngster.
The youngster also talked about his efforts of finding a great balance in his stance while batting. In his own words, the youngster tried to imitate many legends before he returned to zero. “I think played a lot with Virat Kohli’s stance, played U-19 World Cup as well, that worked out pretty well. I tried to copy Smriti Mandhana too but that didn’t really work out well, I couldn’t adjust the timing and stuff like that. At some point of time I must have tried Rohit Sharma’s stance because he is so elegant, that didn’t work out either. So, I am back to basics and back to my own stance,” revealed Parag.
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Riyan Parag also talked about his future aspirations and one can guess ‘What a cricket prodigy of 18 can aspire of?’ Parag said, “There has only been one dream and that’s playing for senior Indian Team. Other than that I just want to go with the flow. I have had a decent IPL and a senior domestic season under my belt. I am just waiting for any opportunity that comes my way and I want to grab it and make it as big as I can.”