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Afghanistan's Mujeeb Zadran
U19 Cricket World Cup

U19 World Cup stars snapped up in IPL auction


Hit For Six!

Both India and Afghanistan have reached the semi-finals of the 2018 ICC Under 19 World Cup in New Zealand and each sides' success have contributed to nine players earning IPL contracts.

The Indian Premier League can change the lives of young cricketers. The auction format is such that bidding wars can ensue and push up the value of players, seeing them earn huge pay cheques at one of the world's leading domestic T20 tournaments.

Many of world cricket's biggest names were snapped up at the 2018 IPL auction over the weekend. And while the likes of Virat Kohli, Ben Stokes, MS Dhoni and Steve Smith were taking home the big bucks, some of the game's up-and-coming stars were also being picked up by franchises. 

The ICC Under 19 World Cup is a wonderful platform for young cricketers to show what they can do. Dozens of would-be senior international players honed their skills at the tournament including Yuvraj Singh, Kane Williamson, David Warner, Hashim Amla and Kohli, and the next generation have clearly been attracting plenty of interest too.

With the 2018 edition of the U19 World Cup taking place in New Zealand - some seven and a half hours ahead of India - players would have woken to hear the news they had been chosen to play in the tournament, which gets under way on 7 April.

Here is a rundown of those who was picked up at the IPL auction this year and how they've gone at the U19 World Cup so far.

Mujeeb Zadran, Afghanistan – selected by Kings XI Punjab at Rs 4 crore (US $629,000)

Much like Afghanistan in general, 16-year-old spinner Mujeeb Zadran has enjoyed an extraordinary rise to prominence. Despite his youth he has already played three senior ODIs for his side, claiming four wickets on debut against Ireland in September 2017, taking seven wickets at an average of 16.57 in his three games altogether.

Zadran has been excellent at the U19 World Cup so far, with his wonderful spell of 4/14 flattening hosts New Zealand in the quarter-finals. Billed as 'mystery spin', his height, bowling style and hard-to-pick googlies have confounded batsmen in New Zealand. If Kings XI are brave enough to give him a go, Zadran could easily prove a break-out star of this year's IPL.

Video cwc19 25 Jan 18
Jakob Bhula bowled by Mujeeb Zadran

Kamlesh Nagarkoti, India – selected by Kolkata Knight Riders at Rs 3.2 crore (US $503,360)

The biggest earner of the Indian players at the U19 World Cup is Kamlesh Nagarkoti and it's easy to see why Kolkata Knight Riders like what they see. Despite his youth, the 18-year-old right-arm seamer is already capable of bowling at over 140kph. He has taken seven wickets in four matches so far at an average of 14.14 with an impressive economy rate of just 3.51.

His spell of 3/18 from 7.1 overs against Bangaldesh was a perfect display of his talents. Nagarkoti bowled quickly and accurately to help his side bowl out Bangladesh for 134 in pursuit of 265.

Video cwc19 26 Jan 18
Nagarkoti the pick of India's bowlers with 3/18

Shivam Mavi, India – selected to Kolkata Knight Riders at Rs 3 crore (US $471,900)

Another right-arm fast bowler, Shivam Mavi has been similarly effective for India at the U19 World Cup. Figures of 3/45 against Australia, 2/16 against Papua New Guinea and 2/27 against Bangladesh show his consistency. 

He joins Nagarkoti at three-time IPL champions Kolkata, meaning they may well go up against each other for a chance to play.

Video cwc19 19 Jan 18
Shivam Mavi won't spare a Dollar

Shubman Gill, India – selected by Kolkata Knight Riders at Rs 1.8 crore (US $283,140)

Right-handed batsman Shubman Gill has been the stand-out batter for India at the U19 World Cup so far. The 18-year-old has batted three times in India's four matches and has passed a half-century on each occasion, scoring 63 against Australia, an unbeaten 90 against Zimbabwe and 86 against Bangladesh in the quarter-final. He has only been dismissed once and is clearly a big talent.

Video cwc19 19 Jan 18
Shubman Gill's 90* against Zimbabwe at U19CWC

Prithvi Shaw, India – selected by Delhi Daredevils for Rs 1.2 crore (US $188,760)

India's captain at the U19 World Cup was picked up by Delhi Daredevils for the upcoming IPL off the back of 537 runs from six matches with three centuries in the 2017-18 Ranji Trophy season. The 18-year-old has simply continued that run-scoring form at the World Cup in New Zealand, racking up scores of 94, 57 not out and 40 so far.

Video cwc19 14 Jan 18
Highlights: Prithvi Shaw's superb 94 against Australia U19s

Zahir Khan, Afghanistan – selected by Rajasthan Royals at Rs 60 lakh (US $94,380)

Zahir Khan (not to be confused with his near-namesake Indian left-arm bowler Zaheer Khan) is the fourth Afghan player overall and second at the U19 World Cup to be selected for the IPL, following Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi and team mate Mujeeb Zadran. 

Although he has only taken one wicket at the U19 World Cup so far, returning figures of 0/20, 0/44 and 1/39 in his three matches, his left-arm wrist-spin is full of potential.

Zahir Khan is a promising left-arm spinner
Zahir Khan is a promising left-arm spinner

Abhishek Sharma, India – selected by Delhi Daredevils at Rs 55 lakh (US $86,515)

All-rounder Abhishek Sharma is a big part of the Indian Under 19 side. He has played in all four of their games so far, scoring 23 and 50 in his two innings with the bat and taking 1/33, 2/22 and 2/11 with the ball. 

Abhishek Sharma scored 50 against Bangladesh in the quarter-final of the U19 World Cup
Abhishek Sharma scored 50 against Bangladesh in the quarter-final of the U19 World Cup

Manjot Kalra, India – selected by Delhi Daredevils at Rs 20 lakh (US $31,460)

Stylish left-handed batsman Manjot Kalra will join team mate Abhishek Sharma at the Delhi Daredevils in April. He kicked off the U19 World Cup in style for India, scoring 86 against Australia. The opener's strength lies through the offside, allowing him to score heavily in the Powerplay, when the field is up.

Video cwc19 14 Jan 18
All of the highlights from Manjot Kalra's fine innings of 86

Anukul Roy, India – selected by Mumbai Indians for Rs 20 Lakh (US $31,460)

Anukul Roy has been in the wickets for India at the U19 World Cup, taking 11 scalps in his four matches so far, including 5/14 against Papua New Guinea and 4/20 against Zimbabwe. Roy, 19, has already been compared to India's Ravindra Jadeja, which is encouraging in itself. 

Video cwc19 19 Jan 18
Anukul Roy's 4/20 against Zimbabwe at U19CWC



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