“U-19 World Cup gave me that extra push and confidence”- Seales

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Cricket West Indies (CWI) will host the ICC Men’s Under-19 Cricket World Cup from January 14 to February 5, 2022. The 14th edition of the premier age-group event will feature 16 teams in four groups with matches to be played in Trinidad and Tobago, Antigua and Barbuda, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Guyana. In the build-up to the tournament, we will share several feature articles with players and officials, who represented West Indies in Youth ODIs and Youth Tests.

Young West Indies fast bowler Jayden Seales has credited the increased amount of youth cricket organised by Cricket West Indies (CWI), before participating in the ICC Under-19 World Cup in South Africa in as key to early career development.

So far, Seales is the only player from that “class of 2020” youth tournament to graduate to full international honours; he made his Test debut against South Africa in June at the Daren Sammy Ground in St. Lucia. Two months later, he announced himself on the world stage with a heroic Man-of-the-Match performance against Pakistan at Sabina Park in Jamaica. He took 5-55 to become the youngest West Indian to take a five-for in West Indies’ 93-year Test history.

During the 13th edition of the age-group tournament, West Indies played some exciting cricket to finish fifth, winning four out of six matches. He was among the leading fast bowling with 10 wickets at an average of 18 runs per wicket, with best figures of 4-19. He spoke to CWI Media and sent his encouragement for the current West Indies Rising Stars Under-19 team as they prepare.

Jayden Seales (left) of West Indies receives his debut cap from former fast bowler Sir Curtly Ambrose at the start of Day One of the 1st Test between South Africa and West Indies at Darren Sammy Cricket Ground, Gros Islet, Saint Lucia, on June 10, 2021. (Photo by Randy Brooks/AFP)

“These experiences gave me a lot more encouragement and showed me the things I needed to do to play at the highest level. So, playing in these tournaments made me work harder from then and I brought it into my game now,” said Seales.

He continued: “Playing in the U-19 World Cup gave me that extra push and confidence. Playing in the international scene for the first time allowed me to see how it is playing in that setting and allowed me to understand the things I needed to do to become an international cricketer.”

A few months ahead of the World Cup, Seales had experience of the regional Under-19 tournament in St. Vincent, camps in Antigua and Tri Series against England and Sri Lanka on home soil. He was also a member of the West Indies Emerging Players team which won the CG Insurance Super50 tournament.

“I’m definitely excited to see this group of guys play at home. I know most of the guys are fairly young compared to when we were playing U-19s, but they are good cricketers as well and I hope they put on a good showing and get themselves onto the International scene as well.” (CWI)

 

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