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Australia include ambidextrous spinner Radhakrishnan in squad for U-19 World Cup

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Sydney, Dec 14 (IANS) Australia on Tuesday announced their 15-member squad for the ICC Men’s Under-19 Cricket World Cup 2022 beginning in the Caribbean on January 14, including the only known ambidextrous cricketer in the country’s junior talent supply line Nivethan Radhakrishnan, who was a Delhi Capitals net bowler during the first phase of the Indian Premier League (IPL) this season.

The 19-year-old Radhakrishnan, whose family migrated to Sydney from India in 2013, had rubbed shoulders with the likes of Ricky Ponting, Steve Smith and several top Indian cricketers during his IPL stint. He was offered a rookie contract by both NSW and Tasmania this season, but he decided to join the latter, according to 7news on Tuesday.

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Radhakrishnan has previously represented Australia at the U-16 level. It was Radhakrishnan’s father who encouraged him to try bowling finger spin with both hands.

The squad includes Cooper Connolly, who has been selected for his second Under-19 World Cup, having been part of Australia’s previous campaign in South Africa. ‘

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Seventeen-year-old Harkirat Bajwa will be hoping to replicate Connolly, having been picked as an underage player who will still be eligible for selection for the 2024 tournament.

Coached by Anthony Clark, Australia have been drawn alongside hosts West Indies, Scotland and Sri Lanka in Group D of the pool stage.

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“Our squad includes players of all disciplines with experience in domestic cricket environments, and many have produced eye-catching performances across a variety of strong competitions this season,” Clark said.

“The Under-19 World Cup provides players with an exceptional development opportunity and we look forward to seeing them represent their country with distinction.”

Australia haven not won the men’s U-19 World Cup since 2010, when Mitchell Marsh led the side that had the likes of Josh Hazlewood, Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson, who are now an integral part of the Australia national teams.

Australia’s campaign begins on January 14 with a match against the hosts in Guyana.

Australia squad: Harkirat Bajwa, Aidan Cahill, Cooper Connolly, Joshua Garner, Isaac Higgins, Campbell Kellaway, Corey Miller, Jack Nisbet, Nivethan Radhakrishnan, William Salzmann, Lachlan Shaw, Jackson Sinfield, Tobias Snell, Tom Whitney, Teague Wyllie

Reserves: Liam Blackford, Liam Doddrell, Joel Davies, Sam Rahaley, Aubrey Stockdale.

–IANS

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