Rahul Dravid says 'too much U-19 cricket is dangerous'
What's the story?
Former Indian cricketer Rahul Dravid, who is the current coach of the 'India A' side and the under-19 team, has described 'too much' under-19 cricket as 'dangerous' for a player.
The statement comes on the heels of talented player Prithvi Shaw's exclusion from India' U-19 squad for the Asia Cup this November; Shaw was asked to be part of the Ranji Trophy instead.
In case you didn't know...
Only 17-years-old, Prithvi Shaw has kickstarted his career in full swing in 2017; earlier this year, the teenager scored his first ever under-19 century in only his fifth ODI, and made his List A debut for Mumbai at the Vijay Hazare trophy in late February.
This week, Shaw put in a staggering 123-run innings for Mumbai against Tamil Nadu, proving Dravid's decision to be a sound one.
Shaw's exclusion from the under-19 side for the Asia Cup came as a surprise to many given his performances, but Dravid clarified that management - and coach - wanted the player to "definitely be part of the U-19 World Cup team in January."
Dravid believes there is such a thing as "too much under-19 cricket." "One thing I found," he said, "was people stay on and play too much of Under-19, which is dangerous." Dravid implied he felt Shaw ran the risk of his career stagnating in under-19 if he remained there too long, and a number of local associations have taken that advice seriously - with another young talent, Washington Sundar, given first-class cricket opportunities.
"Age group cricket has a purpose to solve but it's limited. Then on they have to go and play men's cricket. That's what we decided with Prithvi as well," Dravid concluded.
Following his mammoth 123-run knock - before eventually falling to the bowling of Ravichandran Ashwin, Shaw, with his side Mumbai, will take on Odisha on the 1st of November.
Shaw is firmly in view of the selectors, and playing outside his age group will add to the already growing exposure the Thane native has been getting over the past few years. He has received invitations to a number of training and conditioning camps both in India and abroad, and this will help in his growth as a cricketer.
At 17, Shaw is an ideal age in terms of learning new skills. Receiving exposure at this time will prime him perfectly over the next few years to be part of the Indian international side in future.