West Indies Under 19 Drawn in Group D

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- West Indies have been drawn in Group D alongside Pakistan, Bangladesh and Papua New Guinea in the upcoming International Cricket Council Under-19 World Cup. The ICC on Wednesday confirmed the details for the tournament, which will feature 16 teams. The event will run from January 15 to 30 and is seen as an important breeding ground for the next generation of senior international cricketers. Before the tournament swings into high gear the West Indies will have warm-up matches against Australia and Ireland in Christchurch. The West Indies Under-19s are presently preparing for the tournament by participating in the West Indies Cricket Board’s President’s Cup One-Day Tournament being played in Guyana.

Defending Under-19 World Cup champions India will open its campaign against qualifier Afghanistan in front of the ESPN Star Sports (ESS) cameras at Bert Sutcliffe Oval, near Christchurch on the opening day of the competition with Pakistan facing the West Indies in Palmerston North and 2008 beaten finalist South Africa taking on Ireland in Queenstown. In total, the ICC’s broadcast partner ESS will televise 10 matches, including both semi-finals and the final, and beam the action live around the world.

The 16 teams are split into four groups with Groups A and C being based in and around Christchurch, Group B teams playing their matches in Queenstown and Group D games taking place in Napier and Palmerston North. In addition to the ten full members, there are six associate and affiliate teams taking part, having won through their respective regional qualifying tournaments as well as the global qualifier, which was held in Canada in September.

The top two teams from each group will qualify for the quarter-finals with the remainder of the teams taking part in the plate competition.

The groups are as follows:

Group A: India, England, Afghanistan, Hong Kong

Group B: South Africa, Australia, Ireland, USA

Group C: New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Canada

Group D: Pakistan, Bangladesh, West Indies, Papua New Guinea