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Prithvi Shaw surprised, but keen to lead India U-19 from the front

Prithvi Shaw during the fourth India vs England U-19 ODI in Mumbai early this yearPrithvi Shaw during the fourth India vs England U-19 ODI in Mumbai early this year

Promising Mumbai opener Prithvi Shaw was surprised to see his name as skipper of the India Under-19 one-day team for the upcoming tour of England. However, he told mid-day that he is ready to shoulder the responsibility during the five-match one-day series in the August 7 to 16 trip to England.

"I didn't expect to be named captain. I thought Abhishek (Sharma) would lead the team because he did well in the Asia Cup. But I am happy. Yes, it adds to the responsibility, but at the same time, it is an honour and a privilege to lead the country," said Shaw on Saturday.

The 17-year-old Mumbai batsman, who scored a century on his first-class debut against Tamil Nadu in the Ranji Trophy semi-final at Rajkot said: "I think I will handle the pressure of leading the team as all players are aware of their role in the team. Himanshu Rana and Abhishek, who have led India before, are also in the squad, so I will get their inputs too."

Shaw, who has been to England on four exposure trips to play club cricket there, also said that he would share his experience of playing in English conditions with his teammates.

"I played around 70 matches at various venues and against different opponents when I was on a few exposure trips to England with Samir Pathak. I am also thankful to former Hampshire first-class batsman and coach Julian Wood for his guidance during those tours. I am sure the experience will be of great help to me and our team," said Shaw who will also get an opportunity to play in the longer format (two four-day games against England) under Rana's leadership prior to the ODI series from July 23 to 26 and July 31 to August 3 at Chesterfield and Worcester respectively.

The young Shaw, who was nicknamed Anil Kapoor by former Mumbai Ranji coach Chandrakant Pandit for his standing posture like the cine star with the right shoulder hanging lazily, said that he worked really hard to improve his fitness during the off season.

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