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Rohit Sharma nervous, but confident
Harish Kotian in Mumbai | June 19, 2007 21:00 IST
Mumbai youngster Rohit Sharma admitted that he is feeling a bit nervous on the eve of the Indian team's departure to Ireland for a series of one-day matches.
"I am not feeling any kind of pressure. But, yes, there is a bit of nervousness," Sharma told rediff.com on Tuesday evening.
The 20-year-old made it to the Indian squad for the ODIs against Ireland and South Africa, to be held in Ireland, and also against Pakistan in a one-off ODI in Glasgow.
The right-hander said the players' camp, in Bangalore last week, was a great help and it helped learn a lot from the seniors.
"I spoke to the senior players at the camp on what the conditions would be in Ireland. The wickets there are expected to help the seamers, so was trying to get their inputs on how to deal with it," he said.
Sharma also said he regularly chatted with Mumbai's veteran batsman Sachin Tendulkar [Images], who also made his international debut at a very young age.
"I regularly chat with him. He gives me tips on how to build an innings and how to play in different conditions," he said.
Sharma was included in the Indian team after a string of consistent performances at the domestic level last season. He is one of five Mumbai players in the ODI squad, the others being Tendulkar, Ramesh Powar, Ajit Agarkar [Images] and Zaheer Khan [Images].
"It does help a lot that you have five Mumbai players in the India team. I have played with them, so it definitely helps and you don't feel that much nervous when they are around," Sharma said.
Mumbai cricketing fraternity has high hopes on the youngster and believes he is talented enough to go a long way in international cricket.
"Being a Mumbai player and playing for them is a big thing; and now getting a chance to play for India is also another huge achievement," he said.
India play against a depleted Irish squad on June 23 in Belfast and it seems likely that Sharma could get a game against the hosts, who are missing several key players.
He, however, is not looking that far and just wants to take it step by step.
"I have not set any targets for myself. If I get the chance I will try to make the most of my opportunities," he says.
Asked if he will continue to play his natural game, he replied: "It all depends on the conditions there and also the situation of the game."
With the blessing of his parents and hopes of an entire nation, the 20-year-old sets off on a journey into the unknown and is hopeful and quietly confident of doing well.
"My parents are very happy. In fact, I was not at home when I was selected; so when I came back I met them and they seemed so delighted. Now I am hoping that I do well and make them proud," Sharma declared.