5 youngest Test debutants for India
Playing Test cricket is a dream for any cricketer and playing in one before turning 18 is a fantastic achievement. At the same time, it might backfire heavily as most of the prodigies who are making their debut at a young age would still be raw for international cricket and do not have the temperament and maturity to handle the pressure of international cricket.
Rarely a team picks players less than 18 to play Test cricket and the last player who went on to do that was Mohammad Amir, when he made his debut against Sri Lanka in 2009. The Indian team management is more careful in handling the talented youngsters as the last player who represented India before turning 20 was Ishant Sharma in 2007.
The Indian team has lost a lot of talented prodigies by fast-tracking them to the international circuit and it is good that they have realized and wait for the players to mature to handle the pressure at the highest level.
In the past, the Indian team has handed over their debut Test caps to players even before they turned 18 but not everyone was successful. Let us take a look at the list of five youngest players to represent India in Tests.
#5 Maninder Singh
Just before the 1983 World Cup, one name that was creating waves in the Indian cricket circuit was Delhi's 17-year-old slow-left-arm spinner, Maninder Singh. Maninder was troubling almost all the batsmen in the domestic circuit and was soon rewarded with a national call-up.
He even went on to create history by becoming the youngest ever Indian to play Test cricket as he was handed his Test cap at an age of 17 years and 193 days. He remained wicketless in the match as Pakistan beat India by an innings and 86 runs.
Unfortunately, Maninder could not live up to his potential as he managed to play just 35 matches in his career that spanned over 12 years. In those 35 matches, he managed to score 99 runs at an average of 3.80 and picked up 88 wickets at an average of 37.36 with his best bowling in an innings being 7/27.