South Africa’s under-19 team is looking forward to testing itself against current world champions, India. The two sides will take each other on in a Youth Test and Youth Quadrangular One-Day International series from February 16 to March 12 in Trivandrum, Kerala.

The squad of 15 will depart for the sub-continent on Friday, following a five-day, pre-tour camp which included a two-day warm-up match against the Northerns senior provincial team.

Ahead of the first Youth Test, SA U19s head coach, Lawrence Mahatlane, said a series against India will provide the ideal platform for exposure for his side and can play a role in the identifying process for future stars.

“Our core business as the SA U19s is to give young men experience and hopefully identify future Proteas,” said Mahatlane. “I think a tour to India, who are world champions, is something important in order to expose these youngsters to a good tour, a good cricket culture, tough opposition and four-day cricket,” he said.

The Proteas will take on India U19s, India U19sB and the Afghanistan U19s in a round-robin contest which will decide the final and third/fourth play-off matches to take place on Monday, 11 March.

With India being the current ICC U19 Cricket World Cup holders following their triumph in 2018, Mahatlane hopes this upcoming Youth ODI series will provide the building blocks going into the 2020 World Cup that will be hosted in South Africa.

“There’s no other better place to build character and to show what kind of attitude our young men have than touring the subcontinent,” he stated. “With tours like these, there’s no better learning experience. You can practice as hard as you want but experiencing it for the first time and knowing that more than half the countries that play in the ICC, play in the sub-continent, will be invaluable.”

South Africa under-19 squad

Matthew Montgomery [captain], Luke Beaufort, Jonathan Bird, Achille Cloete, Gerald Coetzee, Marco Jansen, Thamsanqa Khumalo, Bonga Makaka, Andile Mogakane, Kgaudise Molefe, Lifa Ntanzi, Bryce Parsons, Siya Plaatjie, Ruan Terblanche, Nonelela Yikha.