Delighted to score his maiden century on debut, Indian opener Yashasvi Jaiswal said this is just the "start" and revealed how skipper Rohit Sharma's words ahead of the opening Test fuelled him to do well.
The 21-year-old lived up to the expectations with a record-breaking century on debut as he was batting on 143 at close on day two to help India extend their first innings lead by 162 runs and take a firm grip over the West Indies in the first Test.
"This is just the start of my career... Koshish yeh karoonga ki main kitna lamba leke jaa sakta hoon (My effort will be to see how far would I be able to take it from here)," Jaiswal said in the post-match media interaction.
Jaiswal reached the century in 215 balls with Rohit playing a big support as the newest opening pair for India put together 229 runs.
It was also the highest opening partnership for India against the West Indies in Tests, overtaking the 159-run stand between Virender Sehwag and Wasim Jaffer in 2006 Gros Islet Test.
"We spoke a lot. All the time, he (Rohit bhai) kept telling me from where do I get my runs from, and how to negotiate the bowlers," he said.
"Before the game also there was a lot of discussion. He told me 'you have to do it, you are the only person', I kept thinking about that and how I can get my runs. I've learnt a lot from this game, hope to continue."
"It makes a big difference when your legend players in the team talk to you, I try to pick their brains. We (Rohit bhai and I) had a good communication going." I
t's been a fairytale journey for the teenage prodigy who came up the ranks in Mumbai cricket after migrating to the 'Maximum City' from Uttar Pradesh.
Having impressed in Under-19 cricket and in the IPL where in the 2023 season he became the fourth youngest batter to score a maiden century.
In absence of the injured KL Rahul, Jaiswal was picked for the West Indies tour and got to open the innings with Shubman Gill dropping down to No. 3.
The youngster grabbed the opportunity with both hands and became the 17th Indian batter to smash a century on Test debut.
With 143 not out, Jaiswal also became the highest rungetter for India on Test debut outside Asia, surpassing Sourav Ganguly (131 vs England, Lord's) "Of course, it was very emotional for me and my family, this is to everyone who supported me through thick and thin. It's been a long journey. I want to thank everyone who helped me at some point of time," he said.
"It feels great. It was an emotional moment, I enjoyed it a lot, I'm still unbeaten, will try to keep playing."
"I want to dedicate this to my parents who have played a big role in my life and God is also there. I don't want to talk much. It's just the start, I just want to keep going from here."
Jaiswal boasts of an impressive record in domestic cricket across formats.
He has amassed 1,845 first-class runs at an average of 80.21, with nine hundreds in just 26 innings. In List A cricket, he has a double-hundred in 32 games.
The Rajasthan Royals batter ended IPL 2023 as the fifth highest run-getter with 625 runs at a strike rate of 163.61.
He credited it to his mental preparation and fitness.
"It's about how I prepare myself mentally and of course fitness is very important that I follow a lot to remain in good shape and practice accordingly. While playing, I bat depending on the scenario." Asked whether he would eye a double century, he said: "I will try to give the team a good start. I will just keep my focus on the process. I will try to do my best."