U19 CWC is a platform to showcase talent in big arena: Waqar Younis

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan coach Waqar Younis on Tuesday said the Under-19 Cricket World Cup is a platform for youngsters to showcase their talent in the big arena and urged the players to enjoy the tournament.

The Under-19 World Cup will kick off on Wednesday (January 27) at

Chittagong, Bangladesh. The 16-nation tournament features nine Test-playing nations and seven Associate and Affiliate members Afghanistan, Canada, Fiji, Namibia, Nepal, Ireland and Scotland. On the opening day, defending champion South Africa will take on host Bangladesh while England will play Fiji, says a press release issued here.

Waqar said the U19 World Cup in the modern cricket era has gained in stature. “Thanks to the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s endeavours, it (U19 CWC) has emerged as a dream event with every young cricketer aspiring to be a part of it.

Waqar gave his wishes to all participants in the World Cup. “My advice to those playing this tournament, especially to team Pakistan, is to give this tournament your all, and enjoy the event and the pedestal it affords you,” he said.

He said remember you (players) are ambassadors of your country, so it is important to have pride in your performances on and off the field.

Kapil Dev, an ICC Cricket Hall of Famer who led India to victory in the ICC Cricket World Cup 1983 wished good luck to all the boys participating in the tournament saying they can write their own destiny.

Bangladesh coach Chandika Hathurusinghe said the U19 World Cup is a breeding ground for budding cricketers. “When you are young, you don’t feel any pressure and you just enjoy the moment,” he said. New Zealand coach Mike Hesson wished the junior Kiwi team good luck and said he will be watching their performance closely.

Veteran coach Dav Whatmore, who is currently with Zimbabwe, said the tournament could launch several promising careers. “This could be the beginning of a great career. A lot of top cricketers have come through the U19 World Cup,” Whatmore said.

Scotland’s coach Grant Bradburn also wished the participants well.

“May you all realize your dreams and skills, and step forward onto the world stage during this amazing tournament”.

Ireland’s head coach John Bracewell said it is a great opportunity for the players to show what they can do. “This is the first major step for the squad on their international careers,” he said.