Angkrish Raghuvanshi and Raj Bawa smashed centuries as four-time champions India registered a 326-run win over Uganda to top Group B in the U19 World Cup in Trinidad.
India qualified to the knockouts as group winners to the Super League, thanks in part to the highest score of the tournament so far by Bawa.
The Hrishikesh Kanitkar-coached side thus ended the league stage with three wins in as many games, having earlier defeated South Africa U19 (by 45 runs) and Ireland U19 (by 174 runs).
India play their quarterfinals against Bangladesh on January 29, in a repeat of the final from the 2020 edition.
The group stages of the ICC Under 19 Men’s Cricket World Cup 2022 came to an end with qualification shootouts, superb centuries and a five-wicket haul.
Pakistan eased to a nine-wicket win over Papua New Guinea to set up a Super League clash with Australia.
Afghanistan came out on top in a straight shootout for the Super League in Group C, securing a 109–run win over Zimbabwe to progress.
Bangladesh triumphed in another winner-takes-all game, beating the UAE by nine wickets (D/L method) in a rain-interrupted Group A match.
Records tumble in India’s victory over Uganda
Raj Bawa and Angkrish Raghuvanshi powered India past several batting records as they set Uganda an insurmountable total of 405. After captain Nishant Sindu fell for 15 in the 16th over, Raghuvanshi and Bawa worked together to add 206 runs in 22.4 overs.
Opener Raghuvanshi was eventually dismissed for 144 runs from 120 balls, Bawa would then continue to pile on the runs as Kaushal Tambe and Dinesh Bana made useful cameos.
By the time left-hander Bawa reached 150, 66 per cent of his runs had come from boundaries and at the close of the innings, he held the highest score of the tournament, surpassing the 154 not out from England’s Tom Prest, to end with 162 from 108 balls including 14 fours and eight sixes.
The overall total of 405 for five marks India’s second-highest score behind their 425 for three against Scotland in 2004, in that match Shikhar Dhawan hit 155 not out, the previous highest individual score for India at the ICC Under 19 Men’s Cricket World Cup.
Uganda’s challenge got even tougher as opener Isaac Ategeka was forced to retire having been struck on the forearm by a Rajvardhan Hangargekar delivery. The right-arm seamer then dismissed his replacement Cyrus Kakuru for a first-ball duck off the final ball of an eventful first over.
Captain Pascal Murungi, who earlier took Uganda’s best figures of 3-72, batted bravely for 34 but could not stop the inevitable victory as Uganda ended on 79 for nine from 19.4 overs with Ategeka unable to retake the field. Murungi was unfortunate to be given out LBW.
The 326-run victory is India’s largest at an ICC Under 19 Men’s Cricket World Cup, and the second-highest ever, and sets them up for a replay of the 2020 final against Bangladesh, while Uganda will face the UAE in the plate quarter finals.
Shehzad on target with the ball as Pakistan dominate Papua New Guinea
Opening batter Muhammad Shehzad shined with ball rather than bat as Pakistan earned a nine-wicket win over Papua New Guinea to set up a knock-out meeting with Australia.
Papua New Guinea started positively as Christopher Kilapat and Boio Ray put on 24 for the first wicket.
However, once the wicket of Kilapat, who top-scored with 11 fell Papua New Guinea lost the next nine wickets for 26 runs.
Pakistan’s bowling was impactful as well as wayward, the bowlers contributing 19 extras to Papua New Guinea’s total of 50. Ahmed Khan claimed the wickets of the two openers on his way to three for 10 before captain Barnabas Maha was run out having added only two to the total.
Aue Oru then provided some resistance as he made seven from 25 balls but he was to be the second of Shehzad’s victims. The final four batters to get out failed to score as right-arm seamer Shehzad claimed five for seven, the most economical five-for of the tournament so far.
Chasing the modest total of 51, Shehzad was out for a duck from six balls before Abbas Ali and wicketkeeper-batter Haseebullah Khan combined to put on the runs needed for a comfortable victory.
Pakistan top Group C having won all three of their matches to set up a repeat of the 1988 and 2010 finals with Australia, while Papua New Guinea will meet the hosts the West Indies in the Plate League.
Afghanistan edge out Zimbabwe to progress
Suliman Safi’s century helped Afghanistan to victory over Zimbabwe in the final game of Group C to earn a quarterfinal tie with Sri Lanka in the Super League.
The Afghanistan captain put on 111 from 118 balls, including 14 fours and three sixes, to move Afghanistan to 261 for six as he was dismissed on the final ball of the innings. Four other batters posted scores of over 20, with opener Nageyalia Kharote contributing an important half-century from 45 balls.
Alex Falao was the pick of the bowlers for Zimbabwe as he took three for 54 from his ten overs to move on to eight wickets for the tournament so far.
In reply in Diego Martin, Zimbabwe opener Matthew Welch led the charge with Steven Saul contributing nine to the score before being given out leg before wicket to leave his side on one for 49.
Welch’s next two partners could add only one run to the total before it was Welch’s turn to fall having made 53 from 61 balls.
No one else was able to continue the run-scoring going as the required run-rate climbed above a run and ball and wickets kept tumbling as Nangeyalia Kharote took four for 30.
Rogan Wolhuter frustrated the Afghanistan bowlers putting on a gritty 28 from 52 balls and did well to keep the strike and deny Afghanistan the chance to bowl at tailender Mcgini Dube. However, Dube eventually fell for four and Falao followed soon after as Zimbabwe slipped to a 109–run defeat and will now face Scotland in the plate quarterfinals.
Defending champions Bangladesh qualify for knockout stages
Bangladesh’s bowlers worked in tandem to restrict the United Arab Emirates to 148 on their way to a nine-wicket victory.
The UAE slipped to eight for two inside three overs as Ashiqur Zaman dismissed the two openers to earn himself figures of two for 14 from eight overs. Dhruv Parashar and captain Alishan Sharafu then combined to steady the ship for the UAE putting on 44 runs for the third wicket.
Punya Mehra then top-scored with 43 off 64 balls but could not find a partner to stay with him as the final seven wickets fell for 98 runs. Ripon Mondol returned Bangladesh’s best figures taking 3-31, with three other bowlers also coming away with dismissals.
Chasing 148, Bangladesh made a commanding start reaching 86 before losing their first wicket as Iftakher Hossain was caught by Soorya Sathish off the bowling of Jash Giyanani. Hossain had added 37 runs from 70 balls, with fellow opener Mahfijul Islam putting on 45 runs before the players were taken off the field due to rain in Basseterre.
Mahfijul was able to reach his half-century as the teams emerged with a new target of 107, the opener eventually reaching 64 not out from 6 balls, as Prantik Nawrose Nabil joined him in the middle as they sealed the victory and safe passage to the knockout stages.
Bangladesh will be hoping for a repeat of the final last time out when they face India while the UAE will face Uganda in the opening Plate quarterfinal.
Meanwhile, three Australia players have received positive PCR test results for COVID-19 through the official event testing programme. The players are currently self-isolating and are being monitored and cared for by the medical team.
Covid-19 replacement for India
The ICC has confirmed that the Event Technical Committee of the ICC U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup 2022 has approved Vasu Vats as a replacement for Manav Parakh in the India squad.
Vats is a temporary replacement for Parakh who has tested positive for COVID-19 and is undergoing a period of isolation. A COVID replacement can be temporary, in that once the player has recovered he would be eligible to return to the squad in position of the player that replaced him. Vats played in the match against Uganda on Saturday.
ICC U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League Fixtures
26 January – Quarter-Final 1 England v South Africa; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
27 January – Quarter-Final 4 Sri Lanka v Afghanistan; Coolidge Cricket Ground
28 January – Quarter-Final 3 Pakistan v Australia; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
29 January – Quarter-Final 2 India v Bangladesh ; Coolidge Cricket Ground
30 January – Play-off Semi-Final 2 Loser QF 1 v Loser QF 4; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
31 January- Play-off Semi-Final 1 Loser QF 2 v Loser QF 3; Coolidge Cricket Ground
1 February - Semi-Final 1 Winner QF 1 v Winner QF 4; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
2 February - Semi-Final 2 Winner QF 2 v Winner QF 3; Coolidge Cricket Ground
3 February - 5th / 6th Play-off Winners of Play-off Semi-Final 1 and 2; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
3 February - 7th / 8th Play-off Losers of Play-off Semi-Final 1 and 2; Coolidge Cricket Ground
4 February- 3rd / 4th Play-off Losers of Semi-Finals 1 and 2; Coolidge Cricket Ground
5 February – U19 Men’s CWC Final Winners of Semi-Finals 1 and 2; Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground
Content courtesy: ICC Business Corporation FZ LLC 2020 via Online Media Zone.
With PTI inputs