Indian batter Rajat Patidar received his maiden national call-up for the three-match ODI series against South Africa in Lucknow, after some good performances in the Indian Premier League (IPL) and also in domestic cricket.
"Virat Kohli and AB De Villiers are my idols. They are highly experienced in international cricket. I looked at them and wondered, 'how would I talk to them?'. But then they talked to me themselves, it was a good moment for me. It gave me confidence. I have learnt a lot from Dinesh Karthik, Virat Kohli, and AB De Villiers in the nets while playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore. Especially Virat, who carries the same intensity in both nets and matches. It feels good watching it and I try to add that intensity in my own game." said Patidar in a video posted on BCCI's Twitter handle.
Patidar considers his Indian call-up, a dream come true and said that the IPL 2022 eliminator against the Lucknow Super Giants, where he scored 112*, was a turning point of his career.
The batter said that he enjoyed his first practice session with Team India and felt good after talking with and being appreciated by veteran opener and stand-in captain Shikhar Dhawan.
Patidar explained his approaches to the different formats in IPL and domestic cricket saying, "That IPL knock gave me confidence. But white-ball and red-ball cricket are different. I have the ability to play all formats. I try focusing on both formats separately, keep myself in the present and play as per the demand of the team."
Patidar had a breakout IPL season with RCB this year, having scored 333 runs in eight matches at an average of 55.50 with a century and two fifties. He followed it with a match-winning ton in the Ranji Trophy final for Madhya Pradesh, ending the season with 658 runs and finishing second on the batting charts.
The batter also impressed on his India-A debut, scoring 319 runs in four innings at an average of 106.33, including a century on his debut against New Zealand A. He also scored 65 runs in two innings in the ODI series after the Test series against NZ-A.