08 March, 2021

White Flannel Knights

They could be India's salvation. Players from the under-19 squad are ready to step centrestage.

White Flannel Knights

Blood ‘em young. It’s a policy cricketing nations such as Australia, South Africa and Pakistan have effected to the maximum with telling results. Rarely India. When the country has shown courage, the likes of Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and Sachin Tendulkar have flourished. Then, such is the BCCI’s operational style, selections and omissions often defy logic and form. Now, here’s an occasion to overturn that attitude. The under-19 team’s World Cup win in Sri Lanka gives the senior selectors a wider talent pool to pick from-particularly after the flopshow by the Gandhis, Kanitkars and Dighes in Aussieland.

Mohammed Kaif, Reetinder Sodhi, Yuvaraj Singh, Shalabh Srivastava and the other youngsters showed in Sri Lanka what it takes to excel at the highest level-pluck, determination, confidence and self-belief. Against formidable teams like Australia and Sri Lanka, they played with purpose and spirit to notch up improbable wins. In sharp contrast to their seniors capitulating repeatedly Down Under, Kaif & Co cruised past all opposition-proving that Indians have it in them...

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