Rahul Dravid appreciates Mayank Agarwal's efforts
Rahul Dravid suggests that being dropped from the Ranji side was a wake-up call for Mayank Agarwal.
Mayank Agarwal has returned with a bang after scoring 377 runs in four innings for India A. The run-fest included two big tons. Coach, Rahul Dravid was delighted with the opener’s performance and said that he was showing "very good hunger".
The 24-year-old has a reputation of being an aggressive batsman. However, his this approach makes his stay on the crease very short. Having played 71 matches in the T20 matches since his debut in 2010, he is considered as an asset in this format. He has played just 23 matches in the last four seasons of the List A matches. In the last Ranji season, he was one of the top contenders who was to open for his side, Karnataka, but was dropped halfway through.
"Maybe just being dropped from the Ranji Trophy side last year [has shaken him up]," Dravid said. "He was not part of the side when they went on to win a final, in the XI. And I think that might have hurt him. You can say there was a certain amount of valid criticism because for a guy of his talent, not to get a first-class hundred [is not good]. It's obviously tough in a side like Karnataka with so many young batsmen coming through. You've sort of got to really be consistent and score runs. And he missed out. So maybe, I think, that has been a really big wake-up call for him."
Agarwal is not a complete batsman yet and struggles quite a bit with bouncers. In 2011, his average across all formats in 15 matches was 14.93. In 2012, his average was a little better with 20.86 from 20 matches. He improved in leaps and bounds in 2015 after scoring 855 runs in 22 matches at an average of 42.75.
Dravid also appreciated the hard work the young batsman has put in towards his fitness.
"He's worked really hard in the off-season," Dravid said. "I can see he has worked very hard on his fitness. He's lost lot of weight and he's been batting a lot. I have had a few conversations with him even during the IPL when he played against us [Rajasthan Royals]. You could see that he was very keen."
This turn-around occurred in the Vijay Hazare Trophy this year. He scored at an average of 60, earning his spot in the India A squad.
"He recognised he had done well; he did well in the Vijay Hazare trophy in the back end which got him selected for this," Dravid stated. "He did well in the IPL, so maybe there's been a turnaround. I wouldn't know the exact reasons for it, but maybe just the fact of being dropped can hurt you."
By performing persistently in the domestic circuit, Agarwal hopes to make it to the national team.