Captain Uday Sharan on Thursday said camaraderie in the dressing room has played a key role in the Indian team's dominance in the Under-19 World Cup and vowed to bring the trophy back home.
Defending champion India has not lost a single match in the tournament. It has won by huge margins and was untested before taking on hosts South Africa in the semi-finals, in which it registered a narrow two-wicket win.
India has been performing tremendously in the Under-19 World Cup and has reached the title match seven times in the last nine editions.
“Winning this tournament is a dream for all of us. Everyone gets only one Under-19 World Cup and we want to repeat history. We also want to register our names in history. We are focused on giving our best,” Saharan told PTI in an interview.
He said, “I would like to ask the countrymen to continue supporting us like this. We promise to give everything to bring back the cup.'' India's strong performance in the tournament was highlighted by three wins by margins of more than 200 runs.
“The secret of our team's good performance is team bonding. The atmosphere in the dressing room is very friendly. Everyone trusts each other and is ready to help each other. That is why the performance graph has been consistently good,” said Saharan, who spent his early days in Sri Ganganagar before being shifted to the border town of Fazilka in Punjab.
“We are not focusing on the opponent team, we are focusing on our game. We have made a match-by-match strategy and are taking every match seriously,” Saharan, who has scored 389 runs in six matches so far, said.
Asked whether there would be a change in his mind if the Indian team played against Australia as the senior team had lost to them in the ODI World Cup final last year, Saharan said, “I am not thinking anything like that.” “We are focused on our game and we have to give our best. We are playing according to the circumstances of the match. Every match is important because it is the World Cup and all the teams are good.'' The senior national team has many stalwarts like Mohammad Kaif, Virat Kohli, Shubman Gill and Ravindra Jadeja emerging from the Under-19 World Cup.
Saharan refused to be compared with these stars and said that he will not take the pressure of legacy.
“I never think about it. I don't think about the past. I just think about how I can give my best for the team and get the best from the team.'' Chasing the target of 245 runs in the semi-final against South Africa, Saharan was four for 32. Took the team out of trouble after losing wickets.
Saharan pulled the team out of trouble by making a record 171-run partnership for the fifth wicket with Sachin Dhas (96).
“My father taught me to play it as long as possible. I chose to be a finisher and I will try to fulfill this responsibility till the end to help the team win.
“I don't want to do anything different. Anyway, I remain calm even in difficult situations. It is important to keep the mind working and I think I am doing the same now and will do the same in future also. “Shubman Gill is also from Fazilka and has emerged from the Under-19 World Cup which is inspiring. My aim from the very beginning was to make my country proud.'' He said, ''Virat Kohli is my favorite because his passion and aggression is amazing. His love for the game, enthusiasm and desire to win inspire me. I have never met him but we have talked on team video calls. I want to meet him soon.”