Maharashtra batsman Ankit Bawne, who was picked in India ‘A’ squad for the tour of South Africa, feels the opportunity is a step in the right direction for the right-hander. Bawne has earlier played for India ‘A’ against the touring Australia but this will be his first overseas tour with the ‘A’ team.
“I see this tour as an opportunity to perform well, which can eventually open the doors for the India team,” Ankit told PTI.
“I am not taking any pressure having (enough) experience of playing domestic cricket. I will start my preparations considering the nature of pitches in South Africa, which are usually pacer-friendly,” he added.
Bawne, who made his first-class debut for the state in 2007, has piled up 4,688 runs and has an unbeaten 258 as his highest individual score in the 69 matches he has played so far. In the 2016-17 season, Bawne, along with teammate Swapnil Gugale, broke the 70-year-old partnership record when the pair shared an unbeaten 594-run stand against Delhi in October.
“If a batsman performs well on pacer-friendly wickets, it is more creditable and hence I look to perform well in the tour,” said Ankit.
India ‘A’ to be led by Karun Nair will play two four-day matches against South Africa, with the first game beginning on August 12 at Benoni.
India ‘A’ squad for ODI: Mandeep Singh, Shreyas Iyer, Sanju Samson, Manish Pandey (Captain), Deepak Hooda, Karun Nair, Krunal Pandya, Rishabh Pant (wk), Vijay Shankar, Axar Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jayant Yadav, Basil Thampi, Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Siddarth Kaul.
India ‘A’ squad for Tests: PK Panchal, Abhinav Mukund, Shreyas Iyer, Ankit Bawne, Karun Nair (Captain), Sudip Chatterjee, Ishan Kishan (wk), Hanuma Vihari, Jayant Yadav, Shahbaz Nadeem, Navdeep Saini, Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Aniket Choudhary, Ankit Rajpoot.