Mumbai, Jan 21 : Former England captain Michael Atherton believes that the forthcoming Under-19 cricket World Cup will be a great platform for the young players to judge themselves against the best of their age-group.
Atherton, now one of the most respected cricket commentators and writers, played in the first edition in Australia in 1988 alongside teammate sser Hussain, West Indies great Brian Lara, Pakistan’s Inzamam-ul-Haq and Sath Jayasuriya of Sri Lanka. “It is a fantastic competition and a wonderful opportunity for the best young players around the world to test themselves against the best of their age-group,” Atherton, who went on to play 115 Tests and 54 One-Day Intertiols (ODI) for England, said in a release on Thursday. The tourment is due to start on January 27 in Bangladesh. Three-time U-19 winners (2000, 2008, 2012) India are clubbed in Group D alongside the other Ireland and New Zealand and Nepal.
Defending champions South Africa will open their title defence against host Bangladesh in Chittagong on January 27 at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium. The Proteas and Bangladesh are in Group A alongside Scotland and mibia.
The 47-year-old said the upcoming tourment will also “produce its share of great intertiol players of the future".
“Australia would have some of the strongest youth cricket, particularly when young players are given a chance to play against men in grade cricket,” he said.
“India has more young cricketers than anywhere else where it is to an extent a numbers game. Pakistan could be among the most tural and instinctive. Beyond that, who knows,” he added.IANS