With the tournament proper of the World T20 set to begin soon, all the big guns will be looking at their young players to step up and prove their mettle in the showpiece event of the shortest format.
With different T20 leagues coming into prominence in recent years, young talent from around the globe have had their opportunities to rub shoulders with International stars and have showcased their abilities to find a place in the National side.
Today, we look at the Top 5 youngsters to watch out for in the World T20.
#1. Mohammad Amir
Still only 23, Mohammad Amir’s comeback to international cricket from the wilderness has been nothing short of contentious. He wasn’t exactly welcome in the dressing room initially and the fast bowler had a bad outing in his comeback tour of New Zealand. But a stunning performance against India in the recently concluded Asia Cup has put the 23-year old back on the spotlight again.
In one spell, he completed his journey of redemption and showed glimpses of his ability with the ball. In true Pakistani tradition, Amir’s skill with the new ball and his ability to use pace and movement to stifle batsmen even on subcontinental tracks can pose a serious threat to the best of batsmen at the World T20.
#2. Jasprit Bumrah
The fast bowling prodigy from made a name for himself with the Mumbai Indians in the IPL, Jasprit Bumrah’s stock has risen exponentially in the last couple of months. His peculiar bowling action, added to his pace and ability to bowl full-length deliveries makes him an asset for Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the death overs.
Bumrah can consistently bowl yorkers in the slog overs, and given death bowling has been India’s biggest problem, the young fast bowler has made an instant impact in the T20 side.
#3. Kagiso Rabada
If there is one bowler who can take over Dale Steyn’s mantle, it is the young South African quick Kagiso Rabada. Think the India series last winter, when the 20-year old rattled a star-studded Indian batting order with his pace and variations.
One of the most complete fast bowlers in world cricket at the moment, Rabada possesses a top-notch yorker and has the ability to deceive the batsmen in pace without any noticeable change in his action. Having already given a glimpse of his ability on subcontinental tracks, Rabada promises to be a key player in South Africa’s bid to win their first World T20.
#4. Mustafizur Rahman
Rahman became an overnight superstar in Bangladesh and grabbed the attention of the cricketing fraternity when the left arm fast bowler bagged 11 wickets in his first two ODIs as Bangladesh beat India for the very first time in an ODI series.
Boasting good pace and ability to stifle batsmen with his cutters, Rahman has the necessary variations in pace and deliveries to trouble any batsman in the world. Bangladesh need Mustafizur Rahman at his best if they are to upset some of the big name sides in the World T20.
#5. Hardik Pandya
Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s search for the optimal balance between bat and ball has been completed by Hardik Pandya. Dhoni lamented during the ODI series in Australia that India could have done with a fast bowling allrounder, and Hardik Pandya’s inclusion in the team has added that elusive balance to the men in blue.
Pandya has readily chipped in with his quota of four overs to take on the third seamer mantle, picking up 10 wickets in 11 T20Is, and with quick fire knocks against Sri Lanka at Rajkot (27 off 12 balls), and against Bangladesh in the recent Asia Cup (31 off 18 balls), the youngster has shown signs he can ease worries in the middle order with his ability to score quick runs and hit the big shots.