Mumbai: With the entire world currently fighting the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, athletes across sports are utilising multiple digital and social media platforms to connect with their fans.

On Tuesday (April 21), Delhi Capitals (DC) opener Prithvi Shaw engaged and interacted with fans during an Instagram live session on the franchise’s official handle.

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Speaking on how he has been spending time during the nationwide lockdown, Shaw said, “I’ve been working out a bit indoors and shadow practicing to maintain my fitness levels. I’ve also been helping my father in the kitchen. I can cook eggs quite well, and I’m trying to learn a few new things. I’ve been playing some PUBG too.”

The 20-year-old, who spent a part of 2019 serving a doping ban, reflected on his time away from the game, and the lessons learnt. “It was a mistake. And the period away from cricket was a torture,” he said.

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“Doubts and questions arise, but I kept the faith and belief. I spent some time in London where I was working on my fitness, as I wasn’t allowed to bat anywhere. When the ban got over, and I returned to domestic cricket, I was hungrier than before. I picked up my bat and realised I hadn’t lost my touch at all. If anything, that time off made me a more determined person,” he added.

Shaw also spoke about the 2019 season of the IPL where DC finished third, having made it to the playoffs after a seven year gap.

“On and off the field, our team was like a family,” he said. “We had Ricky (Ponting) sir, Dada (Sourav Ganguly), (Mohammad) Kaif sir to help us with anything – the environment was perfect.”

When asked to recall a funny anecdote from the season gone by, Shaw spoke about how Ponting had once scared him by ordering him to take 10 rounds of the Feroz Shah Kotla as he had reported slightly late for a pre-training team meeting. 

“I was looking for some new spikes in the dressing room that day and reached the ground a bit late,” he said. “I completed the entire training – fielding and batting sessions – and had no energy left to run 10 rounds of the ground. Luckily, I didn’t have to. Turns out Ricky sir just wanted to scare me off for my late attendance that day!”

Talking about the importance of mental health in such unprecedented times, Shaw said, “Mental strength is very important at this time, given that we are all restricted indoors. A lot of us don't have patience for things in life, so now is a great time to work on it. Everyone should find something to do that they like, and work towards perfecting that. That process in itself will help one grow calmer and become more patient.”