Amid the ongoing battle between Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill for the opening slot in the upcoming two-match Test series against New Zealand starting February 21 in Wellington, India head coach Ravi Shastri heaped praises on both calling them “supremely exciting talents”.

“Both are supremely exciting talents. Regardless of who gets into the XI in Wellington, the fact of the matter is they’re here, part of India’s national squad, and from here on they should know that the sky remains the limit,” Shastri was quoted as saying by TOI.

Talking about Gill, who is yet to play his maiden Test match, Shastri said: “He’s phenomenally talented. His approach to batting is very clear and he exhibits a very positive mindset. That’s very exciting for a boy who’s just 20 going on 21.”

Notably, with regular opener Rohit Sharma out due to a calf muscle injury, either of Gill or Shaw is likely to open with Mayank Agarwal.

“They’re all from the same school, you know. They love facing the new ball, enjoy a challenge. Rohit is unfortunately out so that puts Shubman and Prithvi in contention to open with Mayank. That competition is necessary and that’s what makes a bunch of 15 look strong and stable,” the coach added.

India, who whitewashed New Zealand 5-0 in the T20I series in 2020, were outplayed by New Zealand with a 3-0 scoreline in the recently concluded ODI series. However, when it comes to their performance in ICC World Test Championship (2019-21), India have won all the seven matches played till date. The guests will look to continue to dominance in the red-ball game when they take on the Kiwis on Friday next week.