Team India will be eyeing a sixth U-19 World Cup triumph as they take on Australia in the tournament’s summit clash on Sunday in Benoni, South Africa. India are the most successful side in the history of the tournament, having reached the final on eight occasions prior to the ongoing edition. India first won the U-19 World Cup in 2000 under the leadership of Mohammed Kaif, followed by four more triumphs in 2008, 2012, 2018 and 2022.
Despite boasting such a rich record in the event, India have never hosted the tournament.
Former India captain Sourav Ganguly has shared his views on the reason behind India’s absence, when it comes to hosting the tournament.
Ganguly feels that there’s no particular reason behind it as the idea of the tournament is to take cricket to different parts of the world.
“There is no particular reason to it (India not hosting the U-19 World Cup). The other World Cups are played in India. What’s wrong if this one is played in places where the senior World Cups don’t take place that often? It’s one way of taking the game to other countries,” Ganguly told RevSportz.
There is another perception that the BCCI doesn’t host the tournament as it does not generate enough revenue.
Bursting the myth, Ganguly said: “You can say it’s a loss-making tournament. Most World Cups not featuring the senior men’s teams are non-profit. But that’s not the reason the U-19 World Cup hasn’t been played in India. And I think it’s going to be held in India,” he added.
Malaysia (2008) and UAE (2014) are the Associate members of the ICC to stage it once each, while the next edition will be co-hosted by Zimbabwe and Namibia in 2026.
Few careers will get wings to soar while some will fade into oblivion but on Sunday, all those sprightly 18 and 19-year-old Indian boys will leave no stone unturned to win a record sixth ICC U-19 World Cup title.
India U-19 had beaten Australia in the 2012 and 2018 finals, and will again start favourites during this edition’s title match.
(With PTI Inputs)
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