2022 Under-19 World Cup – Wyllie, Dhull, Brevis and Wellalage headline ESPNcricinfo’s Team of the Tournament
Our XI features four Indians, but find out who else made the cut
India were the most dominant team at the 2022 Under-19 World Cup, but many other teams also impressed with their talent and skills. Here’s who made ESPNcricinfo’s Team of the Tournament.
With unbeaten scores of 86 and 101 in Australia’s group stage wins, Wyllie was his side’s anchor in pursuits against the West Indies and Scotland. His 97-ball 71 against Pakistan in the quarter-finals secured a safe passage to the semi-finals. The runs, however, dried up by the time of the semi-final and playoff for third place, and the first contender for the tournament’s best run-getter finished fourth.
It was a slow rise to the top for the Pakistan fly-half who, after scoring 135 goals against Zimbabwe, was unable to score for the next three games. However, after Pakistan lost the quarter-final, Haseebullah once again flourished with the bat, going 79 against Bangladesh and 136 against Sri Lanka to eventually finish as the tournament’s second-best run-getter. A total of eight catches and two stumpings in six games also earn him the gloves.
The player of the tournament ranks third, having scored 506 points in six games – the most in the history of a single edition of the U-19 World Cup. He could have finished with four centuries in six innings, but missed two when he was out in 96 and 97 against Ireland and England respectively. Brevis was so dominant that he scored more than 120 points more than second-placed Haseebullah. His legpin also earned him seven wickets.
The India vice-captain makes the cut even though he missed two games. It’s because of his crucial contributions in key situations. Against South Africa, India were 11 to 2 in their opening game, but Rasheed started India’s recovery with 31. Then in the semi-final against Australia, he hit 94 in a similar situation with India losing both early openings. Against England in the final, it was his 50 in the chase that laid the foundation for India’s four-wicket victory.
Like Rasheed, he also missed two games but didn’t lack impact. Against South Africa his 82 took India to 232 which turned out to be a winning total in the end. He also made an unbeaten 20 in the quarter-finals when India suddenly dropped five points with the target still a few points away. However, Dhull saved his best for the semi-final against Australia where his 110 was a round that had composure and aggression in equal measure. He absorbed the pressure of a knockout as India lost their first games with few players on the board. He will also wear the captain’s armband in this team.
One of the main reasons for Sri Lanka’s sixth-place finish in the event was thanks to the all-out effort of its captain. His left-arm spin earned him five wins over Scotland and Australia, while his three wins over the West Indies and Afghanistan saw him finish as the competition’s highest wicket-taker with 17 counters. With the bat, he batted 52 to defeat Australia, 113 against South Africa and 40 against Pakistan.
Before his exploits in the final – where he finished with the best bowling figures in the history of the U-19 World Cup finals – Bawa had two other exceptional matches. He took 4 for 47 against South Africa in a match where he came back to take those wickets after being hit all over the ground in the first out. Against Ireland he made an important 42 from the No.3 as India missed their regular captain and vice-captain due to Covid-19. He then posted the tournament’s highest individual score with a 162 unbeaten run at a 150 strike rate. But he saved his best for last: 5 for 31 with the ball and a major 35 runs with the bat.
The orthodox left-arm spinner showed metronomic precision and the skills to fool hitters not only off the field but also in the air. His economy of 3.63 crushed his opponents and achieved significant breakthroughs. It was their 5 for 28 against South Africa that allowed India to defend 232, while their 2 for 25 against Bangladesh and 3 for 42 against Australia in the round of 16 helped India none of the teams to exceed 200.
The right-arm tailor was Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker throughout the event, taking 15 wickets – the third-highest in the competition. He also had the second best numbers – 6 for 56 against Zimbabwe. His three-for against Afghanistan was important in Pakistan’s quest to top the group. It went on to win 2 out of 46 in the quarter-final loss to Australia and 3 out of 52 in the playoff against Bangladesh.
With 15 wickets at an average of 9.86, the left-arm swing bowler may have missed the wicket count by two, but he was, by far, the most impressive bowler in the tournament. He played nine maidens in all, providing control with the new ball. On death, he had the skills to deliver accurate yorkers. His 4 for 16 against Bangladesh knocked them out for less than 100, and Canada were no match for their skills when they finished with 4 for 44. He rocked Africa’s early players du Sud in the quarter-finals from where they could never recover.
In a disappointing event for the 2020 champions, one bright spot was Mondol’s bowling. He started the competition with an unbeaten 33 not fight against England, but his main skill came to the fore in the next two matches, where he took 4 for 24 and 3 for 31. He impressed with a four for against India in the quarter-final which, for a brief moment, worried the future champions. He ended his tournament with the wicket of Brevis in his last playoff game.
12th man: Tom Perst (England)
Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @sreshthx