Talking to the media while inaugurating a photo exhibition at Behala College in the southern fringes of the city, he said, ''I think I love challenges. There is a certain desire and hunger in me that eggs me on to prove myself. '' '' I surely enjoy pressure. Whenever the team or I am on the backfoot I see it as an opportunity to showcase my skills and prove a point, ''
Dravid, nicknamed 'The Wall', for standing tall amid ruins of Indian batting time and again, said, He then went on to add that in studies if one sees adversity as a threat there is a possibility that he will fail. '' In sports it's the same, '' said Rahul, who made his way back to the side scoring a spectacular century in the Ranji after being dropped from the side in the one day series against Pakistan.
Asked what records he had in his mind, Rahul, the fighter said, '' After playing for so long, you stop thinking about records. I want to do the best I can. The numbers and runs don't matter much anymore. What matters is whether I can win matches and play critical innings when the team needs me and if I can continue to do that I will be happy. ''
He then went on to add that ''in order to succeed at the international level, one needs to sharpen other skills too, but most important thing was to love the game, love cricket. '' '' You need to work hard, learn to stay focussed, but most importantly you need to rediscover yourself as a person and love the game, '' he said.
Asked how he managed to handle the private and professional life, he said, '' I owe it to my family, my parents, my wife and my little son. They always support me and help me focus. I like to keep my personal life away from the professional life. And they help me maintain that. My family is precious to me. ''
'' Love for the game need a lot of sacrifice. I had very supportive parents. It was a case of time management between school and cricket. So I had to sacrifice on films, friends and a lot of other things. But I enjoyed doing what I was doing, '' he added.
Asked to comment on his love affair with Eden Gardens, he said, '' It is a venue where I have one of my most memorable innings.
Laxman and myself had that partnership that helped us win against Australia after they had induced a follow-on on us. They had won 16 Tests on a trot before that. And winning that Test was all the more commendable. '' On March 14, 2001, V V S Laxman rewrote history books making 281 with Rahul Dravid, who batted heroically for 180.
The feared Australian bowling attack failed to take a single wicket through the day as the two Indian batsmen added a record 357 runs for the fifth wicket and were unseparated at the close of the fourth day's play with India having made 589 for four.
Besides this Rahul recounted his first century against Bengal in Ranji here in 1991, and centuries in both the innings against Pakistan the last time the duo played here.
'' I think it's the venue that makes it so special. There are innumerable sweet memories. When the 1,00,000 crowd eggs you on, I think you want to showcase all your skills. '' '' I hope I can repeat the feats here in Eden in the second Test that gets underway on Friday, '' he said.