“My first Test match was his last Test match and actually I did not spend lot of time with him, but I have been a great fan of him as an youngster,” he told reporters on the second day of the India camp at the KSCA stadium here today.
“It is a great opportunity for youngsters to talk to him about cricket and learn from him and move forward. So it will be a great time for us,” the opening batsaman said further.
Asked what he makes out of Kumble-Virat Kohli combination, Vijay said it would be early to make such a comment but expects to have great 12 months ahead for Indian cricket.
“I can’t talk anything ahead of time. It will be too early to comment on that, but it is going to be great 12 months for us as a team - that much I can guarantee you. We are going to be up for it and we just want to be best in coming 12 months,” he said.
Replying to a query, Vijay said the team had a great time with Ravi Shastri when he was Team Director and the players are certain to learn many tricks from Kumble.
“We had a great time with Ravi Bhai, and Anil Bhai has picked up for now, and hopefully we can have good time with him and learn lot of things from him. He has been an unbelievable cricketer for India,” he said. Asked about the difference playing the West Indies in their backyard, Vijay said it is going to be an entertaining series and will give boost to their confidence to take on New Zealand in the subsequent series at home.
“It is a great place to play cricket because there is more fun and there is competition inside. So, we cannot ask for more as a sportsperson. There is entertainment overall and we are looking forward for this series,” he said. Vijay further said, “It will be a confidence booster for us to play and perform and execute our plans. Thereafter, come back and play matches in the home series. So there is lot of stake for us.”
Asked about the pressures of playing under venues like Kanpur and Indore, Vijay said it would be interesting to know the conditions there, but gave importance to acclimatisation of playing conditions as fast as possible.