Virat Kohli was speaking during the press conference in Mumbai before India's departure to South Africa. (Photo: AP)
Mumbai: While all the eyes will be on Virat Kohli and co as they leave for a gruelling South Africa tour in the wee hours of Thursday, the Indian Under-19 team, under Prithvi Shaw, will also be followed closely as they fly to New Zealand for the ICC U-19 World Cup which kicks off on January 13 next year.
Kohli, who was to meet Shaw and the boys before the Rahul Dravid-coached side leaves abroad, said he is excited about the Mumbai youngster.
"I will meet them now. Rahul bhai had spoken to me and asked me to speak with them before the team (Under-19) leaves for New Zealand. So, even I am excited about Prithvi.
"We have heard a lot about him and Ravi bhai has also told us a lot about him. He has performed well in First Class cricket which is not a normal thing. It is very rare. He is promoted to lead the side which has players who played Under-19 before him. So, he has a special ability," said Kohli.
Dravid, under whom India made it to the final in the last edition of the Under-19 World Cup, too welcomed the fact that there are five to six players in the side, including Prithvi, who have played First Class cricket.
"It’s great to have Prithvi in the side and along with Prithvi, there are five-six guys who have played at some level of First class or List A experience. Even the last team, there were guys who had first class exposure. It’s nice for them to bring to experience that. The conditions will be slightly different for us," said Dravid.
Prithvi, meanwhile, said that he and his team are looking at the Under-19 World Cup as a "great opportunity".
"I think it’s a great opportunity for all of us. The hard work that we have been putting in for the last three years, this will help us well. As a captain, I just want to lead the team properly. All of us know our responsibilities. Many of us have played First Class and List A," said Shaw as his team’s leaves for New Zealand in search of glory.