The ICC World Cup 2019 is just a year away with England and Wales looking to host the event from 30 May to 14 July 2019. The 12th edition of the event will witness ten teams from all around the world battling it out to win the coveted trophy and getting to call themselves the World Cup Champions.
With Afghanistan and West Indies making their entry into the tournament after a gruelling qualifier stage, the stage is set for billions of fans to root for their favourite teams.
A plethora of players like Gary Kirsten, Andrew Symonds, and Virat Kohli made it large on their debut at the big stage and since then, have become household names. Making a mark in the World Cup is always special as it ensures your name getting written into the history books. In the end, every player would like to make his world cup debut memorable with a performance that will cement his position for the entire tournament and future as well.
Here are four such players who might be playing their first world cup in 2019 and can make a name for themselves on the biggest platform of them all.
Honourable Mention: Aiden Markram (South Africa)
#4 Kagiso Rabada (South Africa)
Kagiso Rabada is one of the completest fast bowlers in the world cricket today. With fiery speed and intimidating bounce, Rabada first made headlines with 6/25 against Australia in the 2014 Under-19 World Cup constantly hitting speeds of 140+.
At such a young age of 23, Rabada has already become one of the most deadly bowlers with the ability to reverse-swing the ball against the direction of the seam, with the old ball and new. Currently ranked first in Test cricket and seventh in ODIs, Rabada’s skills and consistency are worth banking upon, and on his day, there isn’t any better than him.
Despite being a great team and delivering astounding performances all year, somehow, South Africa has never managed to lift the World Cup even once. Rabada and co will be looking to end the drought, with him being a valuable asset to the side.
#3 Babar Azam (Pakistan)
Regarded as one of the best batsmen today, Babar Azam is on route to becoming the next batting sensation the world will see.
His arrival solved Pakistan’s problem of a dependable No. 3 in the shorter formats of the game. Ranked second in ODIs and fifth in T20 Internationals, Azam is the current vice-captain for the Pakistan national team.
With Pakistan looking forward to recreating the success of 1992, Babar Azam will play a vital role being the backbone of the batting lineup.
Ever since his entry into the Under-19 team, his raw talent has been unleashed and gradually polished. At 23, Azam has a phenomenal chance to make his World Cup debut next year and could even turn out as the highlight performer.
#2 Jasprit Bumrah (India)
Jasprit Bumrah came into limelight when India was in desperate need of a good death bowler.
And boy, he didn’t disappoint. Breaking into the Indian Cricket Team with his stellar performance in IPL, Bumrah quickly became a regular member of the Playing XI. Making his ODI debut in January 2016, he is currently ranked first in the ICC bowlers rankings.
Bumrah holds the record for maximum wickets (28) in Twenty20 International in a calendar year.
At just 24, he is undoubtedly the future star of Indian Cricket, a glimpse of which the fans can see at the World Cup in 2019.
Possessing the calm-headed temperament and capability to be India’s next spearhead bowler, Bumrah is unquestionably here to stay.
#1 Rashid Khan (Afghanistan)
The man of the hour, Rashid Khan, will be looking to put Afghanistan on the global map come next year. With 100 wickets in just 44 matches, he became the fastest and youngest bowler to take 100 wickets in ODIs.
Khan made his debut in 2015 at the age of 17 and since the has become one of the best leg break bowlers of this generation.
Not just a spin bowler, he is remarkably agile on the field well capable of putting in dives and saving crucial runs.
Even with the bat, his performances in IPL were duly appreciated when his cameos at sporadic occasions were significant in taking his team all the way.
Rashid is currently ranked first in T20 Internationals and second in ODIs and with him leading the charge of Afghanistan bowling lineup at the World Cup next year, there is no doubt he is only going to get better and stronger.