ICC U19 World Cup 2024: The ICC U19 World Cup 2024 semifinalists have been determined, with India, five-time champions, set to face South Africa on February 6, and Pakistan scheduled to compete against Australia on February 8.
Throughout this tournament, akin to previous U19 World Cups, numerous emerging talents have been discovered. Each team is on the lookout for potential superstars who can carry on the legacy of cricketing greats like Virat Kohli, Kane Williamson, Steve Smith, Joe Root, Jasprit Bumrah, Babar Azam, and others, propelling the sport in their respective countries to new heights. As the competition advances to the semifinals, it's evident that many of these teams have successfully identified future cricketing superstars.
List of standout performers who have excelled in the tournament
Musheer Khan (India)
The Indian all-rounder is the brother of Mumbai domestic batting sensation Sarfaraz Khan. While his brother is busy gathering headlines for his massive hundreds and much-awaited entry into the Indian Test set-up, Musheer has also showcased his talent with both bat and ball.
Musheer is the leading run-scorer, scoring 334 runs in five matches at an average of 83.50, with two centuries and a fifty. His best score is 131. He has also taken four wickets at an average of 24.25.
Ubaid Shah (Pakistan)
India's arch-rivals are no different. Ubaid, the younger brother of Pakistan senior team pace sensation Naseem Shah has delivered performances that could help him play alongside his sibling really soon.
He has taken 17 wickets in five matches at an average of 10.52, with a five-wicket haul (5/44) to his name against Bangladesh, which helped them seal their semifinal spot. He is the second-highest wicket-taker in the tournament so far.
Kwena Maphaka (South Africa)
South Africa has produced some fine fast-bowling talent as of late including Anrich Nortje, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Gerald Coetzee and Marco Jansen. There is a 17-year-old who could join these stars soon. His name is Kwena Maphaka, the leading wicket-taker in the tournament. He has taken 18 scalps at an average of 9.55, with a trio of five-wicket hauls. His best bowling figures in this tournament are 6/21.
He is just five wickets away from breaking Enamul Haque Junior's record of 22 for the most wickets in a single U19 WC and just four away from overtaking Zimbabwe's Wessly Madhevere's 28 wickets in total at U19 WC. The Proteas star also has seven wickets in the 2022 U19 WC, taking his tally to 25 wickets.
Hugh Weibgen (Australia)
The 19-year-old has produced some quality knocks when it mattered the most. During a crucial Super Six clash against England, he smashed a superb 120 in 126 balls, which helped Australia score a match-winning total of 266 runs. He has scored 252 runs in five matches at an average of 63.00, with a century and a fifty. He is the fifth-highest run-scorer in the tournament.
Steve Stolk (South Africa)
There are seven players who have outperformed Stolk in terms of runs, but nobody comes to his impressive strike rate of 148.61. To go along with it are 214 runs at an average of 42.80 in five matches, with two half-centuries. His best score is 86. This combination of high-voltage batting and consistency is not something seen regularly.
(With inputs from agencies)