A contest that every cricket lover was waiting for took place on Tuesday at Potchefstroom in the ongoing Under 19 World Cup (WC). In the battle of heavyweights, between India and Australia, it was the reigning champions who came on top.
After scoring 233, the Priyam Garg-led side defended the low score with pure dominance. Indian bowlers dismantled the Aussie batting line-up by providing early blows, thanks to fast bowler Kartik Tyagi who ripped apart Australian top order and took the maximum of four wickets.
At one stage, Australia were 17-4, but they did show some character, especially by their top-order batsman Sam Fanning who stood at one end when wickets were falling like a pack of cards. The left-hander scored a maximum of 75 runs for his team, but no other batsman supported him for long.
Fanning added 81 runs for the sixth wicket with Liam Scott (35 off 71 balls), and they were looking set to cruise through, but then came India’s magical spinner Ravi Bishnoi who ended the crucial stand by sending Scott back into the pavilion. Fanning departed in the very next over as well, and it was the end of hopes for ‘Boys in Yellow.’
Earlier, Australian bowlers, too, showed their class and forced Indian batsmen to put the extraordinary effort to get every single run.
A courageous fifty from opener Yashasvi Jaiswal (62 off 82 balls) along with valuable contributions down the order from Atharva Ankolekar (55 off 54) and Bishnoi (30 off 31) helped India post a fighting total 233/9.
In the end, ‘Boys in Blue’ defeated the Mackenzie Harvey-led side by 74 runs to seal their place in the semi-finals where they will meet the winner of Afghanistan vs Pakistan game. Tyagi, for his outstanding bowling, was rewarded as the ‘Player of the Match’.
— Cricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) January 28, 2020
Speaking about the victory, it was India’s fifth win against Australia in the U19 CWC – the most by any side.
India have now won each of their last five Under-19 World Cup matches against Australia.
Most wins against Australia in Under-19 World Cup:
5 – INDIA*
4 – Pakistan#U19WorldCup
— Umang Pabari (@UPStatsman) January 28, 2020
Also, it was the ninth occasion in the history of U19 CWC that India have reached into the semi-finals.
India reaching into the semi-final of Under-19 World Cup:
- 2000 – Winners
- 2002 – Semi-finalist
- 2004 – Semi-finalist
- 2006 – Finalist
- 2008 – Winners
- 2012 – Winners
- 2016 – Finalist
- 2018 – Winners
- 2020 – Semi-finalist (contest is still on)
At the post-match presentation, Tyagi said he is pleased to contribute for his team.
“Ball was swinging a bit, last two games were not good for me. I am happy to contribute today. I was trying to hit consistent areas today as I bowled a few wides in the last two games, and that worked. We would want to give our best performance irrespective of the opposition.”
Indian skipper showed immense confidence in his bowlers and said that his side could have defended 180 as well.
“Our start was very good, but they bowled well then (with the new ball). We lost three wickets cheaply, but we came back well. We thought it was a good score. With our bowling line-up, we thought even 180 would be a fine score. At half time, we knew we had a total to defend. We have been preparing for this for the last one and a half years. We know each other well, and we back each other. We knew we had a score to defend when we had 230. And that first over was amazing. Every team has come here to win the World Cup. We will play the rest of the matches win the same intensity.”