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World Test Championship 2021/23

Wisden’s U25 team of the 2021-23 World Test Championship

Wisden's U25 Team Of The 2021-23 World Test Championship
by Wisden Staff 4 minute read

As the World Test Championship final approaches, we take a look at the young players who made their mark on this edition of the tournament with an Under-25 XI.

Three of those who have made this side will be eligible to play in the final at The Oval in June, with seven countries represented in all. Australia, England, India and Pakistan each have two players in the side, while South Africa, West Indies and Bangladesh all have one apiece.

Players who are 25 now but played the majority of the rotation before their 25th birthday were eligible for selection.


Abdullah Shafique

12 matches, 992 runs at 47.23, HS: 160*

The three centuries Shafique scored across the rotation are the most of any player on this list and his 160 not out at Galle came in third on Wisden’s Test innings of 2022. While he failed to pass fifty in nine innings after his final century against England at Rawalpindi, an average approaching fifty and the only player in this team to cross 900 runs makes him the standout opener of the bunch.

Shubman Gill

7 matches, 476 runs at 36.61, HS: 128

India’s next big thing, Gill finally threw off the question of ‘when’ – definitely not if – he would make his first Test century against Bangladesh in December last year. A second followed against Australia in March, part of an incredible run across all forms of cricket that took his international century tally to seven. He’s only 23.

Ollie Pope

14 matches, 844 runs at 33.76, HS:145

There was trepidation when it was announced Pope was set to move up to three at the start of England’s 2022 Test summer. Fear that one of England’s brightest young prospects would once again be undermined by taking on the burden of filling the illusive first drop position. Until then, he had not batted that high in first-class cricket. Fast forward 12 months he has filled that hole admirably. He scored a century in his third innings in the role against New Zealand and a second in Rawalpindi. Definitively, when batting in the middle order during this WTC rotation he averaged 16.8, when batting at three he averaged 41.63.

Harry Brook

4 matches, 480 runs at 80.00, HS: 153

Four matches were enough for Brook to nail down his place in this side. He returned hundreds in half of the innings he batted in, collectively striking above 90. The start of his Test career will go down as the stuff of legend.

Rishabh Pant (wk + c)

12 matches, 868 runs at 43.40, HS: 146

Despite a masterclass hundred at Edgbaston, Pant’s most notable contribution to this WTC cycle was his unbeaten century in Cape Town. On a tricky pitch against South Africa’s formidable pace attack, it was one to add to the growing list of Pant Test classics. After that century he went on to pass fifty five times in eight innings; the car crash he suffered bringing an abrupt halt to his run.

Cameron Green

16 matches, 705 runs at 39.16, HS: 114
23 wickets at 29.17, BBI: 5-27

After announcing himself on the international stage in the previous WTC cycle, Green cemented his status as one of the young players who will go on to define the next ten years of Test cricket with a century right at the end of the rotation. Added to that, he also took 23 wickets including a five-for against South Africa in Melbourne.

Mehedi Hasan Miraz

10 matches, 33 wickets at 36.18, BBI: 5-63
248 runs at 13.77, HS: 47

Of Mehidi’s 33 wickets, 20 came away from home in New Zealand, South Africa and the West Indies. His most memorable performance, however, was his fourth innings five-for against India. His victims included Virat Kohli, Pant and Cheteshwar Pujara as Bangladesh fell just short of what would have been a historic victory.

Marco Jansen

11 matches, 44 wickets at 22.38, BBI: 5-35

Jansen was the leading wicket-taker among the U25s in this rotation. He burst onto the scene in December 2021, taking 19 wickets in three matches against India. From there, he went on to take his first five-wicket-haul against England in a helter-skelter Test match at The Kia Oval. He also finishes as the bowler with the second best average among those with more than 15 wickets.

Todd Murphy

4 matches, 14 wickets at 25.22, BBI: 7-124

Murphy was another who only needed four matches to force his way into this side. A seven-for on debut in Nagpur followed up by consistency over the rest of the tour saw him leave India well in favour. Murphy more than held his own in his first Test assignment.

Jayden Seales

8 matches, 32 wickets at 23.25, BBI: 5-55

Having succeeded against Pakistan and South Africa, Seales was also impressive in West Indies’ series victory over England in 2022. He finished the series as the joint leading wicket-taker. He took a wicket with his very first over of Test cricket before claiming his first five-for the following month. That haul made him the youngest West Indies player to take a Test five-for since Alf Valentine in 1950.

Shaheen Shah Afridi

8 matches, 41 wickets at 18.19, BBI: 6-51.

Afridi is the only bowler on among the top ten wicket takers who averaged less than 20 in the rotation. He is also the only bowler in this side with more than one five-for to his name. One more wicket will take him to 100 scalps in Tests, and at 23 he still has two more years to appear on these teams.

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