The ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup is actually an international cricket tournament which is competed by national under 19 teams. Initially this tournament was staged as one of the off event held in Australia in the year 1988. Since then, the tournament is played once every two years. The Administrator of this cup is the International Cricket Council or initialed as ICC. With One Day International format, the first format of this game was played in the year 1988 with the most recent match being played in 2010. Round Robin and Knock-out are the format of playing in this tournament. Other than that, around 16 teams can participate and play in the matches. The most successful and also the present champion of this World cup with 3 titles on their pocket is the Australia team.
History of the under 19 Cricket World Cup
The year was 1988 when the McDonald’s Bicentennial Youth World Cup was titled and was held as a part of the Australian Bicentenary celebrations. This inaugural event took place in Victoria and in South Australia with teams comprising of seven Test playing nations and also an ICC Associates XI. All these teams competed with each other in a round robin format, where the end result was victory of Australia team over the Pakistan team in the finals. This was the tournament which was known more for the number of many future international players with the likes of Nasser Hussain (England Captain), Mike Atherton, Venkatapathy Raju (the Indian spinner), Chris Cairns (An all rounder from New Zealand), Sanath Jayasuriya, Brain Lara and many such notable players. During this time, Brett Williams led ahead with total 471 runs at an average of 52.33. On the other hand, Mushtaq Ahmed and Wayne Holdsworth were leading ahead with having the top wicket takers with 19 wickets at an average of 16.21 and 12.52 respectively.
The year 1998 saw the event being relaunched in South Africa as a two year tournament. The teams which participated on this match included around nine Test playing nations like Papua New Guinea, Bangladesh, Namibia, Kenya, Ireland and Scotland. Chris Gayle from West Indies took the lead as the topmost run scorer, scoring 364 runs at an average of 72.80. Mluleki Nikala from Zimbabwe and Ramnaresh Sarwan from West Indies scored smoothly with leading wicket takers, with 16 wickets at 13.06 and 10.81 respectively. In 2000, the match was held in Sri Lanka. The format was totally repeated from the 1998 format. Some of the participating nations included Kenya, Bangladesh, Ireland, Kenya, Holland and such teams. During this session, India defeated the Sri Lankan team in the final, with South Africa team defeating the Bangladesh team in the Plate finals. On the bright side, Graeme Smith took the show with being the leading run scorer, scoring 348 runs at an average of 87.00. Also, Zahid Saeed was the leading wicket taker with 15 wickets at 7.60. Yuvraj Singh was named Man of the Series.
Later on, in 2002, this tournament was held in New Zealand. Some of the participating nations included Papua New Guinea, Canada, Nepal and Scotland. During this tournament, the Australian team defeated the South African team in the final match and Zimbabwe ultimately won the Plate against the Nepal team. Cameron White of Australia took the lead as the run scorer with 423 runs at an average of 70.50. on the other hand, Xavier Doherty of the same team took the lead as the top wicket-taker taking 16 wickets at 9.50. Tatenda Taibu of Zimbabwe was named as the Man of the Tournament. In 2004, the match was held in Bangladesh. Some of the new test playing teams included Uganda and Namibia too. The West Indies team lost to the Pakistan team in the finals with Bangladesh defeating the Australian team in the Plate Final. Shikhar Dhawan of India was named as the Man of the Tournament and was also the leading run scorer scoring 505 runs at an average of 84.16. Enamul Haque of Bangladesh took the lead as the leading wicket taker with 22 wickets at 10.18. Ultimately, the tournament was won by the Pakistan team against the West Indies team by 125 runs.
In February 2006, the U-19 Cricket World Cup was held in Sri Lanka where Cheteshwar Pujara of the Indian team was named as the Man of the Tournament. He took the lead score of 349 runs at an average of 116.33. Nepal won this tournament in the finals by beating New Zealand team. Moises Henriques of the Australian team took the lead as the leading wicket-taker with 16 wickets at an average of 10.62. The 2008 U/19 Cricket World Cup was later on held in Malaysia with total 16 teams participating in the tournament and India won this series by defeating South Africa.
The recent Under 19 Cricket World Cup was held in New Zealand in January, 2010. This time, Australia managed to easily defeat Pakistan by 25 runs. Subsequently, the 2012 U/19 Cricket World Cup will be held in the month of February in Argentina.