Unreal Grass Wicket Wanganui allrounder Akhil Kumar got to put his name up alongside the future superstars of the game after he was named 12th man of the ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup tournament team.
The 18-year-old Canadian Indian returned to represent his national side in the tournament, which wrapped up in South Africa at the start of this month with Bangladesh winning their first title by defeating India in the final.
Minnows Canada finished down the ladder in 13th of the 16 sides taking part, but Kumar enjoyed plenty of personal success.
The right-arm pace bowler took 16 wickets to finish third in the overall bowling standings behind India's Ravi Bishnoi and Afghanistan's Shafiqullah Ghafari, who both made the tournament side.
While more runs were needed from him as a top order batsman, Kumar nonetheless had a handful of noteworthy scores, averaging just over 24, while he also scored 59 in a tournament warmup game against the West Indies on January 13.
Other than Kumar, no other player was chosen for the tournament team from a nation which finished ranked lower than 10th, with three players from the champions Bangladesh, three from runnersup India, two from quarterfinalists the West Indies, two from fellow quarterfinalists Afghanistan and one from Sri Lanka.
Canada's tournament started with an eight wicket loss to United Arab Emirates on January 18, with Kumar scoring 30 in his team's 231-8, which UAE surpassed in the 39th over of their chase, Kumar finishing with 0-44 from his seven overs.
Four days later was a heavy 150 run loss to South Africa, with Kumar easily the pick of the bowlers, taking 4-56 from 10 overs as South Africa reached 349-8, while he scored 17 as Canada was bowled out for 199.
That put Canada into the plate section on January 28, where they initially had Zimbabwe in trouble, Kumar taking 3-63 from 10, before letting them recover to reach 271-7, with Kumar making 24 as his team was bowled out for 176 for a 95 run loss.
Kumar would be player of the match two days later against Japan in the semifinals of the playoffs for 13th, because while he only contributed 13 of his side's big 300-7 innings, he steamrolled through Japan's middle order – taking 6-46 from his 10 as part of the 182 run thrashing.
That set up a rematch with UAE, where Canada got revenge with a four wicket win – Kumar taking 3-37 from his 10 as UAE were dismissed for 174, before making 37 as his side reached their target in the 43rd over.
The tournament team was: Yashasvi Jaiswal (India); Ibrahim Zadran (Afghanistan); Ravindu Rasantha (Sri Lanka); Mahmudul Hasan Joy (Bangladesh); Shahadat Hossain (Bangladesh); Nyeem Young (West Indies); Akbar Ali (Bangladesh, c and wk); Shafiqullah Ghafari (Afghanistan); Ravi Bishnoi (India); Kartik Tyagi (India); Jayden Seales (West Indies). 12th man: Akhil Kumar (Canada).
Kumar's Tech Old Boys club team will be the 'home' side in their Coastal Challenge Cup semifinal on Saturday against fellow Whanganui club Property Brokers United at Victoria Park.
In the other playoff, top qualifier Levin Old Boys will host Wairarapa's first-time semifinalists Red Star at Donnelly Park.
Of the four teams, only Tech have won the cup before, being the inaugural champions in 2015-16.
Both games start at 12pm.