As part of the build up to the Under 19 World Cup which starts in Sri Lanka this weekend Cricket Europe takes a look back at previous competitions starting with the inaugural tournament in 1988

The inaugural tournament took place in Australia in 1988. The tournament was part of the Australia's bicentenary celebrations and eight teams took place in the round robin competition. The seven Test nations at that time along with an ICC Associates XI. The four top teams after the initial stages went on to the semi finals and the home side, defeated England to set up a meeting in the final with Pakistan, who were the only side to beat the Aussies in the round robin stages. Australia won by five wickets at the Adelaide Oval thanks to an unbeaten century from Brett Williams.

Looking through the players who took part in is interesting to see that Europe was well represented with Dutchmen Tim de Leede and Maurits Houben joining Dane Soren Sorensen. Also in the side was Dean Minors of Bermuda who last year in Ireland helped his country to qualify for their first ever World Cup.

In the Australian side was one Alan Mullally who later went on to play for England and in the New Zealand team Andrew Caddick featured, albeit only for one game before also switching to England. Looking at the England side a number of future internationalists appeared including Mike Atherton, captain of the side, and Nasser Hussain who would both in due course captain the full Test side along Chris Lewis, Mark Ramprakash, Warren Hegg and Martin Bicknell.

Other stars of the future to feature were Brian Lara who was captain of the West Indies side which also included Jimmy Adams and Nehemiah Perry who would both come to Edinburgh in due course and play club cricket for Royal High and Grange respectively. Another Edinburgh connection was in the Pakistan side with Zahoor Elahi who would play for Stewart's Melville appearing along side current Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq and leg spinner Mushtaq Ahmed

In the New Zealand side Chris Cairns and Chris Pringle were prominent whilst Sri Lanka had Sanath Jayarsuriya recent scourge of the Australian bowling attack and ARRAPWRRKB Amunugama (Amunugama Rajapakse Rajakaruna Abeykoon Panditha Wasalamudiyanse Ralahamilage Ranjith Krishantha Bandara ) who must have the distinction of the most names in cricket.

There is no doubt that the competition gave a good grounding for players who went on to play first class and international cricket, and although it would be another ten years before the competition was repeated it set the tone for the future.