U19 World Cup: Pakistan, South Africa Finish Their Journey On A High
Pakistan and South Africa both signed off their ICC U19 Men's Cricket World Cup campaigns on a positive note with victories on Thursday.
- Pakistan eased past Sri Lanka in the 5th place playoff match
- South Africa edged past Bangladesh in the 7th place playoff match
- India will play England in the final on Saturday in Antigua
Pakistan and South Africa both signed off their ICC U19 Men's Cricket World Cup campaigns on a positive note with victories on Thursday. Two-time champions Pakistan eased past Sri Lanka in the fifth-placed playoff after the two sides chances of lifting the trophy ended at the quarter-final stage last week. Pakistan were in command from the off at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, with openers Muhammad Shehzad and Haseebullah Khan dominating the Sri Lanka attack.
The pair led Pakistan to 100 without loss, Shehzad eventually made 73 off just 69 deliveries before he was dismissed by vice-captain Raveen de Silva.
But Khan was joined at the crease by the impressive skipper Qasim Akram and the two took the game away from Sri Lanka, putting on a superb stand. Both made centuries and took Pakistan beyond 350, Khan was finally gone when trapped by Matheesha Pathirana ending on 136.
Akram remained unbeaten as his side closed on 365/3, setting their opponents a daunting task to claim fifth place.
And the Sri Lankan response was in tatters after just two overs with Akram wreaking havoc with the new ball.
The talented all-rounder removed openers Chamindu Wickramasinghe and Pawan Pathiraja for a combined total of just one, with Shevon Daniel also falling between the two. Ranuda Somarathna also went for a duck with Akram single-handedly reducing Sri Lanka to 4-15.
From then on Sri Lanka were purely batting for pride. Their captain Dunith Wellalage didn't go without a fight and made a brave 40, which included five boundaries.
Vinuja Ranpul was in similarly defiant mood hitting 53 not out and his sides only two sixes of the match.
But it wasn't enough and Pakistan cleaned up a 238 run victory when Treveen Mathew was hit on the pads by Zeeshan Zameer's full delivery, bowling out the Sri Lanka team inside 35 overs to secure fifth place.
Meanwhile, Coolidge Cricket Ground, South Africa were also aiming to end their time in the Caribbean on a high, taking on Bangladesh in the seventh place playoff.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, Bangladesh made a strong start reaching 50 without loss only for Mahfijul Islam to fall to Liam Alder in the 10th over.
But fourth man in Ariful Islam kept maximum pressure on the South African attack, smashing 102 from 103 balls and finding the boundary on 12 separate occasions.
The 17-year-old looked untouchable for so much of the Bangladeshi innings, right until the 47th over when Mathew Boast found a good line and Islam pulled his shot to South Africa captain George Van Heerden.
The Bengal Tigers eventually reached a strong total of 293-8 at the end of their 50 overs.
In reply, South Africa lost Jade Smith in the sixth over when outside edging Musfik Hasan's delivery.
But Dewald Brevis, who hit 97 in the quarter-final defeat to England, offered some hope for his team with a century eventually finishing with 138 off 130 balls.
The other end was less reliable, Van Heerden and Gerhardus Maree both going cheaply, however, Mathew Boast's quickfire 41 from 22 kept them on track.
In a nervy finale, it looked like Andile Simelane would take South Africa over the line, but he was run-out after tidy fielding from Ripon Mondol.
But eventually, they got the win, and seventh place, in fine style when Alder punched a big drive down the leg side that went for six, securing a two-wicket victory in the process.
This bettered their final placing at the 2020 tournament where they finished eighth, but for defending champions Bangladesh a difficult three weeks ended in defeat.