McDermott among Australian probables for U-19 World Cup

Melbourne, Dec 17: Ben McDermott, son of former Australian Test pacer and current bowling coach Craig, has found a place among the 30 probables for the U-19 World Cup to be held in Dubai from Feb 14, Cricket Australia (CA) announced Tuesday.

Besides McDermott, 2013 U19 National Championship player of the tournament Billy Stanlake, South Australian Bupa Sheffield Shield batsman Kelvin Smith, and 17-year-old New South Wales batsman Jake Doran who recently played in the Chairman’s XI match against England in Alice Springs, have also found a place among the probables.

The squad will be reduced to 15 players next month. Australia will compete in Group B of the tournament against Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Namibia with the top two teams progressing to the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup Super League quarter-finals.

CA national talent manager Greg Chappell said: “The ICC U19 Cricket World Cup is the world’s leading underage cricket tournament and has a history of fielding young Australian talent who have later gone on to wear the baggy green, including Michael Clarke, Shane Watson and James Pattinson.

“We are pleased with the balance and flexibility of this squad, which contains a strong mix of talent who have represented Australia in the U19 program at home and abroad throughout the year, as well as a number of cricketers who impressed in the recent U19 National Championships.”

Next year’s ICC U19 Cricket World Cup follows the last 12 months of Australia’s U19 program, which has tested the country’s emerging players in a variety of conditions – from New Zealand to Darwin to India – in order to expose them to challenges faced at international level.

Australia’s final 15-player squad for the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup will be named next year and will be coached by CA’s High Performance Coach Graeme Hick. The squad will gather at the National Cricket Centre in Brisbane for a training camp in January before departing to play three matches in Sri Lanka as build-up for the tournament.

Australian U19 30-player squad: Eejaz Alavi, Connor McLean, Tom Andrews, David Moody, Riley Ayre, Jaron Morgan, Ben Ashkenazi, Damien Mortimer, James Bazley, Brendan Murray, Gabe Bell, Jack Pudney, Jack Blain, Matthew Renshaw, Jake Doran, Matthew Short, Matthew Fotia, Daya Singh, Alex Glendenning, Kelvin Smith, Alex Gregory, Billy Stanlake, Josh Inglis, Jack Taylor, Matthew Kelly, Cameron Valente, Jeremy Maher, Guy Walker, Ben McDermott, Sean Willis.

IANS