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ICC U19 WC: Five Indian stars to watch out as 'Men in Blue' aim for 6th title

India will play their opening game of the competition against Bangladesh on Saturday.

ICC U19 WC: Five Indian stars to watch out as Men in Blue aim for 6th title

Team India (Photo- BCCI Twitter)

JOHANNESBURG: The latest edition of the ICC U19 World Cup will kickstart from Friday and all eyes will be on India to continue their domination in the age group cricket by securing their sixth title and also give cricket its next generation of superstars. India will play their opening game of the competition against Bangladesh on Saturday.

They will play the second game against Ireland on January 25 and the last match of the group stage against the USA on January 28.

Over the years, some promising talent at the U19 level have graduated to the senior level and had the privilege to become an all-time great with their consistent performances and backing from team management, like Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ravindra Jadeja just to name a few.

Following the footsteps of their illustrious and well-decorated predecessors, the current Indian squad will be aiming to make an impact and take their first step towards greatness.

Here are the five players to watch out for during the tournament from the Men in Blue:

Arshin Kulkarni

Kulkarni is by far the most well-known name in the team. He is a fast-bowling all-rounder who is known for his big-hitting abilities like Hardik Pandya. Arshin was picked up by Lucknow Super Giants (LSG) in the Indian Premier League (IPL) auction last year. In his last five innings for India U19, he has made 206 runs at an average of 51.50 with two half-centuries, with a strike rate of over 163 in five T20 innings, a format in which he has 147 runs. In five ODIs, he has five wickets while he has four wickets in his T20 career so far.

Musheer Khan

Musheer Khan is another all-rounder and also the brother of Mumbai batting sensation Sarfaraz Khan, who has been racking up big runs in domestic cricket. In seven ODIs, he has scored 194 runs at an average of 64.66 and a strike rate of 81.17, with one half-century. He also has taken six wickets, including a five-wicket haul. With the ball, Musheer is a slow left-arm spinner. He has also featured in three Ranji Trophy matches for Mumbai, scoring 96 runs and picking two wickets. He also ended up as the leading wicket-taker of the U19 Vinoo Mankad Trophy.

Aravelly Avinash

Avinash was picked up by the five-time champions Chennai Super Kings (CSK) during the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 auction, being the only second player from the U19 squad to be picked in the IPL auction. The left-handed batter often bats down the order, scoring 91 in five innings at an average of 30.33 with a fifty. His 163 for India A in the recent Quadrangular series a couple of months ago is a highlight of his short and budding career so far.

Uday Saharan

The 19-year-old will be captaining the U19 and is the oldest member in the squad. He will be 19 years and 97 days of age during India's campaign against Bangladesh. In seven ODIs so far, Uday has scored 197 runs in six innings at an average of 39.40, with a century and a fifty. During the Australia U19 and Sri Lanka U19 warm-up matches leading upto the tournament, Uday scored 74 and 50 respectively. Along with Adarsh Singh, Arshin Kulkarni, and Musheer Khan, he is a part of a solid Indian top order.

Adarsh Singh

Over the last one year, Adarsh has been the most prolific run-scorer for India, scoring 308 runs in six innings at an average of 77.00, with a century and three fifties. The southpaw along with Arshin could form a really solid opening pair.

India squad: Arshin Kulkarni, Adarsh Singh, Rudra Mayur Patel, Sachin Dhas, Priyanshu Moliya, Musheer Khan, Uday Saharan (C), Aravelly Avanish Rao (WK), Saumy Kumar Pandey (VC), Murugan Abhishek, Innesh Mahajan (WK), Dhanush Gowda, Aaradhya Shukla, Raj Limbani and Naman Tiwari.

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