The India U19 cricket team thrashed arch-rivals Pakistan comprehensively by 203 runs to book their sixth appearance in the U-19 World Cup finals, a first for any team. The team exhibited a brilliant all-round performance to ensure continuance of their dominant campaign. This win also marked a hat-trick of wins for India (2012, 2014, 2018) against Pakistan at the U-19 World Cup.
Shubman Gill, recently acquired by KKR during the 2018 IPL auction, scored his maiden century to lift India to 272/9. Gill, who remained unbeaten on 102, overtook skipper Prithvi Shaw to register the highest individual score by an Indian in the tournament. With the century, Gill took his personal tally to 341 runs in the tournament with an average in excess of 150.
Opting to bat first, Prithvi Shaw (41) and Manjot Kalra scored 89 for the opening wicket to get the team off to a solid start. India suffered two quick jolts after Shaw was run-out, following by Kalra inside-edging a delivery to the tkeeper.
India were cruising at 148/2 when Pakistan pacer Arshad Iqbal, came back strongly in his second spell to pick three wickets in three overs. Reduced to 166/5, Gill partnered with Anukul Roy to establish a 67-run partnership to steady the innings.
Gill was undeterred by the steady stream of wickets falling at the other end and reached his century in the final over. He became the first player to score a century in an Under-19 World Cup game between India and Pakistan.
In reply, Pakistan were bundled out for a meagre 69 runs - their lowest ever in the history of the ICC U19 World Cup. Eight Pakistan batsmen did not manage to get past single-digits, with only Saad and Musa striking a few lofted blows towards the end. Indian seamer Ishan Porel (4/17), who shredded the Pakistan top-order, was the pick of the Indian bowlers finishing with a four-wicket haul.
India now face Australia in the final. Both the teams have won the cup on three previous occasions, and will be looking for their fourth title.
India’s Tour of South Africa
Team India showed great resilience and character to win the third and the final Test against the Proteas at The Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg. The 63-run victory showcased the teams’ ability to win matches outside the sub-continent.
Chasing a target of 241, a 119-run second wicket partnership between Dean Elgar (86*) and Hashim Amla (52) put the hosts just 117 runs away from a memorable run chase. However, on such a treacherous wicket, the fielding side was never out the game. Following Amla’s dismissal, the hosts collapsed dramatically, losing their last eight wickets for just 53 runs to be all out for 177.
While Elgar continued his resistance till the end, the rest of the Proteas batting line-up was wiped out in no time. Mohammed Shami (5/28) was the chief destroyer for the visitors in the second innings, with Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah picking-up a couple of wickets each.
The two teams now square off in a six-match ODI series, which starts in Durban on Thursday.
England’s Tour of Australia
England registered a thrilling 12-run victory over Australia in the final ODI at the new Perth Stadium to complete a 4-1 win in the five-match ODI series. Paceman Curran claimed a career-best 5/35 to derail Australia's chase in the inaugural match at Perth's new stadium.
Chasing 260, Australia looked in control at 4/189 in the 34th over with Marcus Stoinis (87) steering the hosts to their target. However, his exit signalled the beginning of the end for the hosts, as they spiralled from 4/189 to be all out for 247 as fast bowler Tom Curran delivered a superb death-bowling performance. Glenn Maxwell and Tim Paine both scored 34, but it was not enough as Australia collapsed in the penultimate over.
Earlier, England squandered a strong start and were all out for 259 inside 48 overs. England openers Jason Roy (49) and Jonny Bairstow (44) put on a 71-run opening partnership in quick time. Joe Root top scored with 62 off 68 balls, but England’s middle and lower order failed to make an impact as Andrew Tye (5/46) and Mitchell Marsh (2/24