Under-19 players should target 2015 World Cup - Warner
Australia batsman David Warner has said players participating in the upcoming Under-19 World Cup in Australia should aim to make it to the senior squad for the World Cup in 2015, which will be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand. Sixteen teams will participate in the tournament to be held in Queensland (Brisbane, Townsville and Sunshine Coast) from August 11-26, 2012.
"I think each individual who will be appearing in the Under-19 World Cup in 2012 needs to have goals of returning here for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 because if you are good enough to be where you are today, you have to be good enough to be in that squad and that environment in 2015," Warner said.
Warner, 25, was part of the squad for the 2006 edition, held in Sri Lanka. He scored 91 runs in five matches with one half-century as a middle-order batsman. Since his international debut in 2009, he has established himself as a destructive opener in all forms of the game for Australia. Warner said the tournament is a good finishing school for promising players hoping to play for the country.
"It's funny, I batted in the middle-order back then, and now I am opening the batting. I can see where I have come from in respect to changing my game to be the best I can," Warner said. "Everyone's got to start somewhere, and for me it was batting in the middle-order and bowling a little bit of leg spin.
"As a player, I think I've matured into a better person and a better team player - not saying that I wasn't a good team player, but you learn how to actually play the game as an individual and as a team player. I also think you become more knowledgeable about the game."
South Africa batsman Hashim Amla, part of the 2000 edition in New Zealand, said the tournament teaches youngsters invaluable cricket and life lessons. Amla scored 191 runs in eight games with two fifties. He made his international debut in 2004.
"It is a great platform to launch your international career. Look at Wayne Parnell who had a great tournament for South Africa at the event in 2008 (Malaysia) and a year later, he was making his international debut," Amla said. "The challenge for the youngsters is how they manage themselves after they have made their debuts at such an early age."