The Class of 2020 - who are the graduates to make a mark?
Shoriful Islam, Haider Ali, Jayden Seales and Ravi Bishnoi, among others, are making their presence felt in senior cricket
Most Under-19 World Cup players fail to make a mark in senior cricket. Some take many, many years to get there. But a few are quick to make the step-up. Here's a look at some of the players from the 2020 edition, who have swiftly graduated to senior cricket.
Attacking legspinner Tanveer Sangha has developed into a mainstay at his BBL side Sydney Thunder and domestic side New South Wales. He has even been part of multiple T20I squads for Australia, including the one that was scheduled to play in South Africa, a tour that was cancelled because of Covid-19, while he did not get a start in New Zealand. His T20I call-ups were on the back of the 2020-21 BBL season, where he was the leading wicket-taker among spinners.
Shoriful Islam, the left-arm seamer, is now a regular member of the senior side. His variation-packed bowling has made him a go-to death-overs bowler, and he has contributed to series wins at home against Sri Lanka (ODIs), New Zealand and Australia (both T20Is).
After an underwhelming T20 World Cup in the UAE, he went to New Zealand and did his bit in Bangladesh's historic Test victory in Mount Maunganui with his first-innings wickets of Tom Latham, Ross Taylor and Rachin Ravindra.
In the same Test, Mahmudul Hasan Joy was one of the chief contributors with the bat. After his impressive performance - 376 runs at 41.77 - in the National Cricket League, Bangladesh's premier first-class tournament, Joy made his Test debut against Pakistan in Dhaka. He was dismissed for 0 and 6 but in Mount Maunganui, his 78 in the first innings helped Bangladesh take a substantial lead.
Batting allrounder Shamim Hossain smacked 60 runs off 28 balls in two innings as a lower-order finisher in his debut T20I series in Zimbabwe. Bangladesh tried to harness his potential in the run-up to the T20 World Cup, with games against Australia and New Zealand at home, and despite single-digit scores in all those outings, they picked him for the World Cup. He played two games there, scoring 11 off 20 against South Africa and 19 off 18 against Australia.
Ravi Bishnoi, the highest wicket-taker at the 2020 World Cup, earned a handsome IPL contract with Punjab Kings (then Kings XI Punjab) soon after the tournament. His quick-arm action, and excellent googly, has made him a difficult bowler to score off. In 23 IPL games, he has an economy rate of 6.96 and is expected to earn good money at the mega auction before the 2022 season.
Yashasvi Jaiswal, the Player of the Tournament in 2020, had a lukewarm step up to the IPL with Rajasthan Royals, but despite that the opener got to play regularly through the last two seasons. Seeing his potential, Royals named him as one of three retained players ahead of the next auction. He has also become a regular in Mumbai's domestic white-ball sides.
Soon after the World Cup, Haider Ali became the youngest to score a fifty in the PSL representing Peshawar Zalmi. He then travelled to England and made his T20I debut in style, with another fifty. An ODI debut followed against Zimbabwe, and in domestic cricket, he has piled on the runs representing Northern, including hitting a double-century. He has played on away T20I tours in New Zealand, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, and most recently scored his highest T20I score of 68 against West Indies.
Mohammad Wasim, the fast-bowling allrounder, came into national prominence after a stunning run for Islamabad United in PSL 2021. That led to him going to the West Indies, where he made his T20I debut in a rain-affected series, and later to the T20 World Cup. Although he did not get a game there, he took five wickets in three T20Is in Bangladesh and followed it up with eight wickets in three T20Is against West Indies at home. Last week, he was named the Emerging Player of the Year at the 2021 PCB awards.
Mohammad Huraira was Player of the Match in the highly anticipated Afghanistan vs Pakistan game at the 2020 World Cup. After going under the radar for most of the last two years, there was interest in him last month, when he struck a triple century in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, becoming the second-youngest Pakistani after Javed Miandad to do so in first-class cricket. What stood out most in that knock was his strike rate of 90.67.
Fast bowler Jayden Seales had an excellent start to his international career with the wicket of Keegan Petersen in his very first over in Test cricket in June 2021. Then, when Pakistan toured the Caribbean, he took a five-wicket haul in the second innings in a match-haul of eight wickets to take the Player of the Match award in West Indies' win. That made him the youngest West Indian to take a Test five-for since Alf Valentine in 1950. He also played in the Lanka Premier League for eventual champions, Jaffna Kings, and was part of West Indies' white-ball squads against Ireland in December.
Both middle-order batters Dion Myers and Wessley Madhevere, captain and vice-captain in 2020 respectively, are now regular members of the senior side in all formats.
Madhevere has three half-centuries in ODIs and four in T20Is. He has also been used as a sixth-bowler in the white-ball formats. Myers made his international debut in all three formats in July 2021 against Bangladesh at home and has 13 international caps to his name.
Batter Tadiwanashe Marumani has played three ODIs and 11 T20Is, but his returns have been below par.
But allrounder Milton Shumba, meanwhile, is developing into a finisher in T20I cricket. His unbeaten scores of 46, 45 and 66 in the second half of 2021 against Ireland and Scotland makes him one of Zimbabwe's brightest prospects.
Sreshth Shah is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @sreshthx