Kartik Tyagi took a hat-trick in the opening over to see reigning champions India past Afghanistan by 211 runs, while Sri Lanka’s mettle was tested in a tight 15-run win over South Africa in warm-up matches ahead of ICC Under-19 World Cup.

Nigeria, making their first appearance in an ICC tournament, were beaten by Pakistan while England’s clash with Zimbabwe was abandoned.

Tyagi and Jaiswal aid India in crushing win

Yashasvi Jaiswal and Karthik Tyagi starred with bat and ball as India opened their campaign to defend the U19 Cricket World Cup title with a thumping win over Afghanistan in Pretoria.

Having won the toss and elected to bat first, India put on 255/8 off their allotted 50 overs, aided by a 129-run second wicket partnership between Jaiswal (69) and Tilak Varma (55). Both batsmen retired out soon after to give batting practice for their team-mates, with cameo performances from captain Priyam Garg (36) and Shubhan Krishnan Sridhar (25*).

The Afghanistan bowling duo of Abid Mohammadi (3/19) and Fazal Haq (2/48) played their part in slowing down the onslaught and kept the required run rate to below six runs an over. However fast bowler Tyagi (3/10) tore in to the Afghanistan top order with a hat-trick in the first over that dismissed captain Farhan Zakhil, Sediq Atal and Rahmanullah without a score on the board.

Sridhar, Utkarsh Singh and Sushant Mishra went on to pick up two wickets apiece as Afghanistan were reeling at 43/9 after 17.3 overs before a rain delay, and with wicketkeeper Mohammad Ishaq the only player to register double figures. Ishaq was run out two balls after the break as India went on to record a resounding result.

Afghanistan will begin their tournament against hosts South Africa in Group D in Kimberley on Friday. The four-time champions, meanwhile, open their campaign against Sri Lanka in Potchefstroom on Saturday.

Sri Lanka see off South Africa

Sri Lanka clinched a thrilling 15-run victory over South Africa in the teams’ opening warm-up assignments in Soweto.

After winning the toss and batting first, Sri Lanka’s Navod Paranavithana played an anchoring role as regular wickets fell around him. The opener smashed an impressive 12 fours and a six during his 64-ball 68, getting his side past the 100-run mark before falling in the 24th over.

Despite a below-par return from most of the Sri Lankan batters, there were crucial contributions from the lower order with Mohamed Shamaaz (32) adding valuable runs to the total as they posted 197 all out with eight balls to spare.

In reply, South Africa’s openers set the ideal foundation, as Andrew Louw (15) and Jonathan Bird combined for a 48-run partnership for the first wicket. Although the Sri Lankan bowlers managed to take wickets at regular intervals, Bird continued his dominance, scoring eight fours and one six for his 71 off 76 balls.

This was before a spell of 11 overs where South Africa lost five wickets for 39 runs and despite a valiant 46 from all-rounder Jack Lees, the junior Proteas were bowled out for 182. Amshi De Silva’s 2 wickets for 30 runs led the charge for Sri Lanka, with six bowlers taking one wicket.

Pakistan power past Nigeria

Pakistan eased to a nine-wicket victory over Nigeria in their warm-up meeting at Hammanskraal. Chasing a modest 110 to win, the 2004 and 2006 champions reached their target in 14.3 overs aided by a destructive 87 off 38 balls from opener Haider Ali.

Ali’s innings contained eight boundaries and four sixes before retiring out. Mohammad Haris (18*) and Fahad Munir (14*) saw their team home to complete a convincing performance.

Despite winning the toss and electing to bat first, Nigeria struggled as they were hustled out for 109 with nearly 14 overs left remaining from their innings. Sulaimon Runsewe (29) and Simon Mba (20) top scored for the West Africans, with no other batsman managing double figures in a fixture played under murky skies.

The Pakistani bowling, led by Aamir Ali (3/12), was equally destructive with Abbas Afridi and Qasim Akram also claiming two wickets apiece. Pakistan, coached by former Test batting stalwart Ijaz Ahmed, will be in Group C where they will start the tournament against Scotland on Sunday.

This is a first tournament appearance for the Nigerians, who begin their Group B campaign against Australia in Kimberley next Monday.

England and Zimbabwe frustrated by rain

England and Zimbabwe saw their warm-up match rained off on Sunday as persistent showers hit the JC de Villiers Oval in Pretoria.

Zimbabwe had won the toss and elected to bat first but were in trouble after an excellent opening burst by George Balderson. He took 3/16 on four overs, including a wicket with the sixth ball of the match.

There were also three wickets for Scott Currie, who ended with figures of 3/30. His haul included the wicket of the dangerous Wesley Madhevere. The only resistance for Zimbabwe came from Tadiwanashe Marumani, who compiled 53 off 75 balls, including one six and five fours. Zimbabwe were eventually bowled out for just 116, in 31.5 overs.

With England poised to chase and confirm their credentials as one of the tournament contenders, a Highveld storm curtailed proceedings, and the match was eventually abandoned, with England on one without loss after just a single over.

Scores in brief:

Sri Lanka Under 19s beat South Africa Under 19s by 15 runs, Braamfischer Oval, Soweto
Sri Lanka 197 all out, 48.4 overs (Navod Paranavithana 68; Merrick Brett 2-30)
South Africa 182 all out, 44.1 overs (Jonathan Bird 71, Jack Lees 46; Amshi de Silva 2-30)

Zimbabwe Under 19s vs England Under 19s – match abandoned, LC de Villiers Oval, Pretoria
Zimbabwe 116 all out, 31.5 overs (Tadiwanashe Marumani 53; George Balderson 3-16, Scott Currie 2-30)
England 1-0, 1 over

Pakistan Under 19s beat Nigeria Under 19s by nine wickets, Mandela Oval, Hammanskraal
Nigeria 109 all out, 36.2 overs (Sulaimon Runsewe 29; Amir Ali 3-12, Abbas Afridi 2-12)
Pakistan 110-1, 14.3 overs (Haider Ali 70 ret, Peter Aho 0-30)

India Under 19s beat Afghanistan Under 19s by 211 runs, Irene County Club, Pretoria
India 255-8, 50 overs (Yashasvi Jaiswal 69, Tilak Varma 55 ret; Fazal Haq 2-48)
Afghanistan 44 all out, 17.5 overs (Mohammad Ishaq 11; Kartik Tyagi 3-10, Sushant Mishra 2-11)