India are through to the final of the ICC U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup after a convincing 96-run win over Australia at the Coolidge Cricket Ground, Antigua.
A phenomenal 204-run third-wicket partnership between Yash Dhull and Shaik Rasheed helped India to 290/5 in their 50 overs.
India captain Dhull opted to bat first after winning the toss in Antigua, but the innings didn’t get off to the start he would have wanted as Angkrish Raghuvanshi fell for a 30-ball six in the eighth over, with runs hard to come by in the Powerplay.
It was William Salzmann who picked up the early scalp, but Jack Nisbet was the most impressive bowler in the early stages, with his first six overs going for just 12 runs as India were put under huge pressure.
Nisbet got the reward for his tight spell with the wicket of the other opener Narnoor Singh for 16, to leave India in a spot of bother on 37/2.
But that dismissal brought captain Dhull to the crease, and India didn’t look back, as the skipper and Rasheed patiently led the recovery and before upping the scoring rate significantly in a remarkable partnership.
The pair were still at the crease going into the final ten overs and with both approaching a century, and captain Dhull did get to that milestone before signaling his intent with a smoked six off the very next delivery.
And Australia never looked comfortable in the chase, falling 96 runs short as seven wickets were taken by spin, with Vicky Ostwal the pick of the bowlers with 3/42.
India’s victory means they are into a fourth consecutive ICC U19 World Cup Final, where they will play England for a chance to win the title for the fifth time in the country’s history.
Australia will have to settle for a spot in Friday’s third-place playoff against Afghanistan.