The 2020 U-19 World Cup Cup concluded on Sunday with Bangladesh winning their first-ever ICC title at any level after a dramatic win over India in Potchefstroom, South Africa. Playing in their maiden U19 World Cup final, Bangladesh defeated 4-time champion India by 3 wickets via the DLS method.
Though India did not win the World Cup, the tournament certainly gave the country some future stars. Yashasvi Jaiswal, the Indian opener, finished the tournament as the top-scorer (400 runs). In the 6 World Cup innings, Jaiswal had 5 fifty-plus scores–including a hundred. The only time he didn’t get a half-century was against Japan when India were chasing only 42.
However, more than the staggering numbers, it was Jaiswal’s maturity he displayed in the tricky situations during the tournament which showed why he will be the one to watch out for in the future. When India suffered a batting collapse against Pakistan and Bangladesh, it was Jaiswal who stood firm and showed composure with his innings of 105* and 88 respectively.
The U19 World Cup has often served as a platform for the young players to gain international stardom. Current India skipper Virat Kohli, New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Cheteshwar Pujara and many others are the product of this youth tournament. However, it is also true that not all the best performers at the U19 World Cup have been able to continue their success at the senior level. Moreover, some have not been even able to make it the national side, like Jack Burnham–the top run-scorer in the 2016 U19 World Cup.
Here we take a look at how the other top run-getters at the U19 World Cups have performed in their respective senior national side.
2020, 400 runs: Yashasvi Jaiswal (IND)
2018, 418 runs: Alick Athanaze (WI)
2016, 420 runs: Jack Burnham (ENG)
2014, 406 runs: Shadman Islam (BAN)
2012, 365 runs: Anamul Haque (BAN)
2010, 391 runs: Dominic Hendricks (SA)
2008, 262 runs: Tanmay Srivastava (IND)
2006, 349 runs: Cheteshwar Pujara (IND)
2004, 505 runs: Shikhar Dhawan (IND)
2002, 423 runs: Cameron White (AUS)
2000, 348 runs: Graeme Smith (SA)
1998, 364 runs: Chris Gayle (WI)
1988, 471 runs: Brett Williams (AUS)
West Indies U19 batsman Alick Athanaze, Jack Burnham of England, Tanmay Srivastava of India are the ones who have could not gain international caps despite finishing as the top scorers in the editions of the tournament they featured in. But there are also names like Chris Gayle, Shikhar Dhawan and Graeme Smith, who have reached various milestones while playing for their nationals teams.
Dhawan’s 505 runs in the 2004 U19 World Cup still remains a tournament record (Reuters)
Shikhar Dhawan (2004)
Shikhar Dhawan was the highest run-getter in the 2004 U19 World Cup and no player thus far has been able to get past the 500-plus milestone set by the dangerous Indian opener. However, it was not a smooth transition for Dhawan who made three centuries and a half-century in the junior World Cup. Dhawan had to wait for 6 years before making his ODI debut against Australia in 2010. He rose to fame with his fastest century by a Test debutant in 2013 against Australia. He bagged the Player of the Series in 2013 Champions Trophy as India lifted their 2nd trophy.
The 34-year-old also featured in the 2019 World Cup but was ruled out in the middle to a fractured thumb.
Yuvraj Singh (2000)
After walking away with the Player of the Series in 2000 U19 World Cup, Yuvraj Singh went on to play match-winning knocks for champions India in the 2011 World Cup and 2007 T20 World Cup. His 6 sixes off Stuart Broad in the 2007 T20 World Cup still remains to be a sight to behold and his battle from cancer still serves as an inspiration to many.
Chris Gayle (1998)
When Chris Gayle finished with 364 runs in the 1998 World Cup, who could have predicted that the Jamaican would go on to become one of the most destructive batsmen in the sport and continue to play aged 40? Gayle made his ODI and Test debut soon after the Junior World Cup. Since then, the ‘Universe Boss’ has been hitting sixes for fun to enthrall fans. The 40-year-old, who took a U-turn on his retirement last year, is a two-time T20 World Champion and has two Test triple hundreds to his name.
Cheteshwar Pujara (2006)
Cheteshwar Pujara finished at the top of batting charts in 2006 edition of the U19 World Cup but after a wait of four years, he made his Test debut against Australia. Since then, Pujara has showcased his ability to grind it out in the longest format of the game to consolidate the No. 3 position in the Test cricket. He scored 521 runs in the 4 Tests when India clinched their maiden Test series in Australia. Pujara, however, has not played in any T20Is but his defensive skills as a batsman has helped him become one of the most successful players in first-class cricket.
Graeme Smith (2000)
After scoring highest runs in the 2000 U19 World Cup, Graeme Smith, at 22, became South Africa’s youngest ever captain after Shaun Pollock’s resignation from the position. His appointment as a captain then invited wide criticism but he went on to prove the critics wrong with his record 53 victories for South Africa in his 108 Tests in charge.