Pushing for bigger and better things - young Aussie cricketer Jason Sangha

Jason Sangha, the dashing top order batsman and leg spinner, selected in the Australia u19 squad for the second year running. Source: Brody Grogan

17 year old Jason Sangha has been selected to represent Australia in the under-19 squad for the second year running, and may emerge as a key player in the upcoming series against Sri Lanka.

Already the youngest cricketer to earn a rookie contract with the NSW Blues, and having been signed up by Sydney Thunder lst year, Jason Sangha is looking forward to his second year of representing Australia at the u19 level.

"Yes I'm among the younger boys in the team, but I'm very privileged to be selected in the squad for the second time. Last year, all the players did very well in the series we played in Dubai, and we hope to excel in the upcoming series against Sri Lanka," said Jason, in an interview with SBS Punjabi.

A dashing top order batsman, Jason is also a leg spinner. Earlier this year, he had the opportunity to play against the senior Pakistan team, as part of CA XI, and he was also part of the Prime Minister's XI that took on the senior Sri Lankan side at Manuka Oval, Canberra. According to Jason, he learnt a lot from both games and the lessons will stay with him throughout his cricket career.

"The game against Pakistan was essentially the first real international competition I had faced and was almost daunting. It was scary to face the senior Pakistan players," says Jason, adding, "Rahat Ali was the hardest bowler to face."

Reminiscing about the PM XI game against Sri Lanka earlier this year, Jason said," that was a whole new experience. There was a huge crowd, they were chanting my name when it was announced, the whole atmosphere was unbelievable." Jason got out early on a duck, but believes he learnt a lot from that experience. "Looking back, I was distracted by the crowd and the noise. I know now that if I get another chance, I need to focus on the present," says Jason.

Looking ahead, Jason says, "the immediate goal is to beat Sri Lanka and bring the crown home. After that, my dream is first get the baggy blue and play for NSW in the long format. If I'm good enough, I hope to get the baggy green and play for Australian one day, but right now, its one day at a time. The last 12 months have been huge for me, I also have to concentrate on my studies, but I hope to keep pushing myself to do bigger and better things on the cricket field."

The Australian u19 side takes on Sri Lanka in a six match series in Hobart, starting April 8.