5 Indian cricketers who can help India to retain Under 19 WC 2024

Cricket News: The Under 19 World Cup 2024 is set to start from the 19th of January. Being the defending champions and one of the favorites, India are expected to win the title once again.

Sarah Andrew
New Update
U19 World Cup

U19 World Cup (Source: X)

India will be taking part in the Under 19 World Cup 2024, which will be happening from the 19th of January. Initially, the tournament was set to take place in Sri Lanka. However, the Asian side's board was banned by the Apex board due to political interference. As a result, South Africa got an opportunity to host the U19 WC 2024 in their backyard. Sri Lanka though, has qualified for the U19 WC 2024 as a host nation.

This will be the third U19 WC hosted by South Africa. They hosted it in 1998 and 2020 in the past. When it took place in 2020, India lost the thrilling final against Bangladesh. Bangladesh won the Asian Under 19 World Cup just a month back and would be hoping to repeat what they did in 2020. The matches will be taking place in 5 venues - Bloemfontein, Potchefstroom, East London, Kimberley, and Benoni.

The format for the U19 WC 2024 is different from that in the previous edition. 16 teams are taking part in the tournament. They are divided into 4 groups. The top 3 teams from each group would progress to the Super Six stage. Twelve teams would be grouped in two separate groups of six teams each. The two teams that end up being at the top of their respective groups would qualify for the semifinal.

India has a rich history in the U19 WC. They are the side with the most number of wins in the tournament. In 2000, 2008, 2012, 2018, and 2022, India won the U19 WC. The challenge for the defending champions would be to meet the expectations of the fans. For that to happen, the players must come well. Unfortunately, India did not perform well in the U19 Asia Cup 2023. But the fans would be hoping to see them perform better in the U19 WC.

Here are the five players that can help India win the U19 WC 2024. 

Also check: 5 Indian players who might miss out on T20 World Cup 2024 squad (mazaplay.net) 

5. Murugan Abhishek

Murugan Abhishek

Murugan Abhishek is a talented batter. The youngster bats in the lower middle order for India. With the bat, he can bat in two different ways. If the team succumbs to pressure and finds themselves in some sort of trouble, Murugan can anchor the innings and take the team to a safe total. The best example of it was in the semifinal of the U19 WC 2024.

Against the eventual champions Bangladesh, India managed to score only 188 runs. However, it would have been worse had Abhishek not stepped up. He came in to bat when the team was reduced to 36/4. He saw the side being reduced to 66/6 at one point. In his stay in the middle, the young batter scored 62 runs in 74 balls along with a little support from the other end. 

4. Uday Saharan

Uday Saharan

Uday Saharan is the skipper of the Indian team. The youngster is known for his leadership skills and led India in the Under 19 Asia Cup 2023 as well. Though India could not win the event, Saharan was impressive with his captaincy. Uday did not have a great tournament with the bat. He will get a good opportunity to prove himself in the U19 WC 2024. 

As a batter, Uday is someone who can anchor the innings. The star batter bats at number 4 for India. Uday has self-designated himself as someone who can hold one end up so that the other aggressive batters can bat around him. India would be hoping for him to come well, as it will be very crucial for the side to succeed in defending the title.

3. Raj Limbani

Raj Limbani

Raj Limbani is the best bowler in the Indian attack. The star pacer was one of the top wicket-takers in the Asia Cup 2023 last month. The right-arm pacer can operate with the new ball and come back to bowl at the death in the second spell. The pace bowler was a terrific performer with the ball for India and has a good record at the junior level as a pace bowler.

In the match against Bangladesh, Limbani bowled 10 overs and claimed 2 wickets including a maiden. In 4 matches in the tournament, Raj was brilliant with the ball, as he claimed 12 wickets at a bowling average of just 12.50, at a bowling SR of 19.50, at an economy of 3.84, including a fifer. Limbani would be hoping to repeat the good form at a level above.

2. Musheer Khan

Musheer Khan

Musheer Khan is a talented middle-order batter for India. He is the brother of Sarfaraz Khan, who is scoring truckloads of runs for Mumbai in domestic cricket to find a place in the Indian team. For India, Musheer bats at 5. It is a position where the batter must be able to anchor the innings and score at a quick rate as a finisher. Musheer is capable of doing exactly that. 

In the game against Bangladesh, Musheer saved India who suffered a huge collapse. Coming in at 36/4, Musheer scored 50 runs in 61 balls, which included 3 fours and a lot of running between the wickets. Along with Abhishek, he framed a very good partnership and helped India to stay alive in the game. Given the fact that he is a brother of Sarfaraz, all eyes would be on him.

1. Arshin Kulkarni

Arshin Kulkarni

Arshin Kulkarni will be one of the players to watch out for not just in the U19 WC, but in cricket in general in the upcoming days. The star cricketer recently met Jacques Kallis and touched his feet as a mark of respect. Kulkarni wished to become an all-time great All-rounder for India. Players like him are required for India, who do not have a rich history of producing pace bowling Rounders.

With the bat, Arshin can open the batting and take on the bowlers from the word go. With the ball, he can be useful and fetch some wickets for the side. He is miserly with the ball. The star player was the highest run scorer and the second-highest wicket-taker for India in the U19 Asia Cup 2023. All eyes would be on him to see how good he can be against the emerging talents in the world. 

India featured South Africa Men's Under-19 World Cup 2024