‘I picked up from that conversation’ – Mayank Agarwal reveals the piece of advice he received from Sunil Gavaskar ahead of Mumbai Test
Mayank Agarwal was unbeaten at 120 at stumps on Day 1 as India posted 221/4.
Updated - Dec 3, 2021 9:49 pm
Mayank Agarwal put up a batting exhibition on Day 1 of the second Test against New Zealand and brought up his fourth century in the format. Notably, the track at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai was favouring the spinners straightway. As the venue witnessed heavy rain before the start of the clash, the pitch was damp and the ball was skidding onto the surface.
In fact, big guns like Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara bagged ducks on this wicket. However, Mayank hardly put a foot wrong and slammed a brilliant ton. Notably, the opener was unbeaten at 120 at stumps on Day 1 and he would like to continue tormenting Kiwi bowlers on Day 2. Meanwhile, Agarwal received a piece of advice for Indian batting legend Sunil Gavaskar before the game, which apparently helped him.
“Sunny sir (Sunil Gavaskar) told me that it would be better if I keep the bat down instead of picking it too high early on (in the innings). I couldn’t really make that adjustment in the short period. But while he was telling me that, I could see his position, which was side on. So, being side on was something I picked up from that conversation,” Agarwal said after the day’s play.
For the unversed, India finished Day 1 at 221/4 and all the four wickets went to New Zealand spinner Ajaz Patel. However, Mayank was constantly attacking him. On being asked about his approach, the opener said he wanted to put the left-arm spinner under pressure.
This innings was more about grit and determination: Mayank Agarwal
“It was a plan (to attack Ajaz) because I thought he bowled exceedingly well today… kept bowling in a cluster and kept putting pressure. So anything that was there in our half, the plan was to be attacking. Anything that came little towards us in length, I was definitely looking to go. Because he is somebody who is really, really consistent,” he added.
Notably, Agarwal got to open in this series as KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma are not available. Hence, it was pretty crucial for the opener to make a significant mark against the Kiwis. Speaking of his ton, Agarwal said his knock was more about grit and determination.
“This innings was more about grit and determination. Sticking to our plan, just having the mental discipline to be at the plan, to be at it. I know there were times that I didn’t look good, but it didn’t make much of a difference as long as the job was getting done,” Agarwal opined.