Dubai: Future stars will get a chance to show their talent, potential and prowess when the ICC U-19 World Cup gets underway across the United Arab Emirates today.
It is one of the most important and keenly followed cricketing events where teenagers get a taste of international experience, pressure and exposure and also receive training and education on anti-doping and anti-corruption.
India will count on skipper Vijay Zol’s experience in the tournament
This year’s event carries extra significance as it is taking place a year before the 2015 ICC World Cup. A lot of cricketers will be looking to excel here so that they can catch the eye of their national selectors and earn the honour of representing their countries in the sport’s biggest extravaganza which will be staged in Australia and New Zealand from Feb 14 to March 1 next year.
India, also the holders of the World Cup and the Champions Trophy, will seek to defend the junior title in the 16-day tournament where 48 matches will be played. India have previously won the crown under Mohammad Kaif in 2000, Kohli in 2008 and Unmukt Chand in 2012 but unlike Pakistan, their opponent in Saturday’s match here, they have never won back-to-back titles. India seems to have strong credentials as only a month ago here, they won the U-19 Asia Cup defeating Pakistan in the final. Last year in July, it also won the U-19 tri-series featuring Australia and New Zealand and beat Sri Lanka in August.