Mohammed Kaif was the captain of the Indian U-19 team that won the World Cup in 1999. Yuvraj, who was the man of the tournament, along with Kaif were the standout Indian players from that team. They got fast tracked into the challenger trophy squads soon after. Kaif scored back to back 90s and immediately found himself in the Indian Test squad at the young age of 19 against a fearsome South African side.
The Uttar Pradesh player didn’t have a great outing and subsequently lost out on a Test place. While both him and Yuvraj were regular parts of the white ball squad, both couldn’t quite make it big in the Test format. In fact, the duo couldn’t crack open a space for themselves as the Indian middle-order was packed with superstars. According to Mohammed Kaif, the Fab 4 being so good was the primary reason for him and Yuvi not getting many chances.
“The Indian team at that time was full of big players like Sachin, Dravid, Sehwag. So I and Yuvraj could not play many Tests, even though Yuvraj got more chances than me. I got a chance to play against England in Nagpur (in 2006) when someone got injured and I scored 91. Then that guy got fit and I was dropped again. So that team was so strong that I didn’t get many chances to play. They were the greats of the game, legends, players like Sachin, Dravid, inspired us,” Mohammad Kaif further added.