Under-19 World Cup: India storm into semi-final with thrilling win over Pakistan
Biswajit Jha/Zeenews Sports Bureau
Townsville: India beat Pakistan by one wicket in a tense quarter-final match to reach the semi-final of the Under-19 World Cup on Monday.
Chasing 137 to win, India were cruising along despite losing three quick wickets early on. Everything was under control till Aparajith got out on 51. India were 120/6 when he got out. They needed just 17 more to win.
After Aparajith’s wicket India lost 3 quick wickets. At one point of time they needed 10 runs with just 1 wicket remaining.
But the last wicket pair of Harmeet Singh and Sandeep Sharma clinched the match in their favour.
Earlier, India had a horrible start to the chase as they lost three wickets in the first 5 overs with just 8 runs on the board.
Opener Prashant Chopra (4), skipper Unmukt Chand (0) and Hanuma Vihari (0) got out cheaply.
Vijay Zol and Baba Aparajith ensured that India did not lose any further wicket as they took the team past 50-run mark. Vijay Zol finally departed for 36.
Aparajith, meanwhile, did not lose his cool as he completed a gritty half-century and took India close to victory.
India colts medium pacers-Sandeep Sharma and Ravikant Singh-claimed three wickets each to bowl Pakistan colts out for a mere 136 in the 3rd quarter-finals.
After deciding to bat first, Pakista had a disastrous start, losing first two wickets in the very first over. Paceman Sandeep Sharma picked up Sami Aslam and Imam-ul-Haq off the first and fifth ball of the opening over of the match.
Skipper Babbar Azam (50), along with Umar Waheed (27), tried to stabalise the innings with a 53-run 3rd wicket stand. But once Ravikant Singh got the wicket of Waheed, Pakistan started to lose wickets at regular intervals. Apart from Azam, no other top order batsman was able to put any respectable total on the board as Indian bowlers wreck havoc.
Tailender Ehsan Adil (35) played a little cameo and helped his team cross 100-run mark. Kamal Passi, Harmeet Singh and Baba Aparajith also claimed a wicket each for India which helped them wrap up the Pakistan innings in 45.1 overs.