Bengaluru: Indian Premier League's youngest player Sarfaraz Khan, who hit a blistering 21-ball unbeaten 45 against Rajasthan Royals in his side Royal Challenger Bangalore's last match, has set his sight on representing the country in the Under-19 World Cup in Bangladesh next year.
17-year-old Sarfaraz said he would like to impress the national selectors through his performances in the cash-rich T20 league just as other youngsters were doing.
"Sandeep Singh, Sanju Samson, Kuldip Singh have all done well after playing well in the IPL. I also want to use this platform to be selected for the Indian team," he said.
"I will try to also be in the team for the forthcoming Under-19 World Cup," said Sarfaraz on the eve of RCB's match against Kolkata Knight Riders on Saturday.
Sarfaraz, who broke Sachin Tendulkar's school cricket record in 2009 when he scored 439 runs in 421 balls in an inter-school match, gave credit to his senior players in the RCB team for their guidance.
"AB De Villiers is my favourite player. AB always gives me all the tips. When I am nervous he comes over and talks to me. It feels good when such a big player comes and speaks," he said.
"Coach (Daniel Vettori) supported me and encouraged me. He told me not to think too much, but to play my natural game," he added.
Asked what was on his mind when RCB had a poor start in the washed-out game against Rajasthan, Sarfaraz said he decided to bat till the end as it was the team's plan, a strategy which helped RCB to reach 200 runs.
"Despite the early loss of wickets, we hit a plan to play all 20 overs with a plan, and somebody needs to be till the 20th over. I grabbed this role - a ruse which helped us get 200 runs on the board," he said.
"I got lot of confidence from that knock, and I hope to do better for myself and my team," he added.