Bengal's batting stalwart Abhimanyu Easwaran has been a consistent performer at the India A level, and he hopes his elusive India debut will "happen soon".
The top-order batter, who has more than 6,500 runs from 88 first-class games, was a stand-by for the national team in the World Test Championship final and a five-Test series in England in 2021.
"To play for the country is the ultimate goal of any player who picks up the bat or the ball. People talk about me as an Indian cricketer but I haven't made my debut yet. I hope that happens soon," said Abhimanyu, who originally hails from Dehradun.
The 28-year-old, who was ruled out of Vijay Hazare Trophy because of a split webbing in his right hand, has been picked for touring India 'A' squad to South Africa.
Though his selection in the playing XI is subject to fitness, Abhimanyu is confident he will recover in time and be available for the opening game.
"I have only one dream, that is to play for my country. I will not give up on it that easily. I will keep pushing for it.
"I will be making sure that I am well prepared for it. I hope that I will play for the country soon," Abhimanyu, who has 22 first-class centuries, told PTI Video in Dehradun.
On getting into the playing XI against South Africa 'A', he said the stitches on the webbing of his injured right hand will come off on December 6 following which the medical team will take a call on his fitness.
"I may play the first 'A' game in South Africa. The stitches will be cut on the 6th. Then the support staff and the medical team will take a call.
Abhimanyu, who has scored well in both the red-ball and white-ball formats at the domestic level and is his state team's go-to man, added that he is familiar with the playing condition in South Africa, having toured the country in 2021.
"I had been to South Africa in 2021, so I have a fair idea about the conditions there. I have also worked on my batting according to the pace and bounce in those conditions. So yeah, I am very well prepared," added Abhimanyu.
He is also eagerly looking forward to the IPL auction on December 19.
"I hope that I will be picked in the IPL this season. The auction is on the 19th (December). Let's see what happens," he signed off.