Emerging Players to Watch Under 21: Men Part 2

(ICC Media Zone)

Vikramjit Singh
The Netherlands
Left-hand batsman


Few budding cricketers in the emerging world have a reputation as big as Vikramjit Singh, who is believed to be the youngest centurion in the Dutch Topklasse according to Rod Lyall and Bertus de Jong.

Moving to Europe with his family as a seven-year-old, Vikramjit’s game is completely shaped in the Netherlands. A Netherlands ‘A’ player at 15, ‘Next Big Thing’ Singh became a full international at 16, picked to bat three against Scotland in a T20I, no less.

In his Dutch twang speaking to the media, and in his game, there is a measured maturity. An excellent timer of the ball, he looked at ease against Scotland at last year’s U19 World Cup European Qualifier, making good length balls look like half-volleys on the drive. Vikramjit also chips in with some part-time seam, but it is his batting that dominate the Associate game.

County cricket contracts and more international success is the next goal for Vikramjit, and there looks to be little to stop the VRA product.

(ICC Media Zone)

Julius Sumerauer
Right-hand batsman
Right-arm fast-medium

With a population of under 100,000, it’s crucial for players like 19-year-old Sumerauer to adjust to the senior international game given the shallow pool.

A tall front-on quick, Sumerauer has made a promising start to his career with Jersey, taking ten wickets at an average of twenty in Jersey’s Challenge League campaign and seven wickets at a good economy in eight T20Is. Not a bad record considering all those matches were played in parts of the Middle East.

Sumerauer credits his early success to his mother who was also his coach at school, and has spent time in the system at Somerset to hone his craft. He also spent the Australian summer after fulfilling international playing for Prospect District Cricket Club in Adelaide, picking up nine wickets in eleven matches across all competitions.

Mohameed Taiwo
Left-arm medium-fast

With an overlap of talent playing in both the T20 World Cup Qualifier and U19 World Cup squads, Nigeria’s attention to youth development will hopefully bear fruit in the next era of international cricket. 17-year-old Mohameed (also spelled Mohammed) Taiwo is another talent garnering attention around the world.

Taiwo is everything you would hate to face up to as a batsman: a left-armer over six-foot-tall, sharp, slingy, yet steep in bounce as he bustles in. Looking at his action from behind the ‘keeper, it isn’t difficult to see why he is such a handful for young men facing up.

A squad member of Nigeria’s T20 World Cup Qualifier campaign, Taiwo missed out on making an appearance in UAE, though already made his senior T20I debut for the Yellow-Greens four months earlier in African qualification.

(ICC Media Zone)

Marcus Thurgate
Right-hand batsman

In 20 years from now when we look back to recount how Japan grew into becoming a force in the game, the Thurgate name will be front and centre.

Father Chris is both a Japan Cricket Association director and umpire, and all of his three sons may go on to play senior international cricket. The first person to skipper a Japanese team in the U19 World Cup, Marcus is the eldest brother, and was a member of the senior squad as a 14-year-old. Chris, who was also a Japanese team selector, stepped away before Marcus was selected to prevent any perceived favouritism.

Flaunting the same gear as his idol Tim Paine, Marcus is an organised gloveman and a stroke-maker, who dominated East-Asia Pacific World Cup qualification. He finished as the tournament’s highest run-scorer, more remarkable given Japan only took the field three times in the five-team competition. Despite a modest U19 World Cup campaign with the bat, exposure at a higher level is sure to round his game.

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