Going into the final of the ICC U-19 World Cup, it was India, who was the overwhelming favourite to West Indies’ dark horse. But the dark horses came up with a brilliant performance such that the favourites had no answers with which to fight back.
The West Indians won the toss and put the Indians to bat first, and Alzarri Joseph ripped into the Indian top-order reducing them down to 27/3 within the first seven overs. Washington Sundar and Sarfaraz Khan looked to have started to rebuild the Indian batting innings, when Ryan John and Shamar Springer jolted the Indian comeback attempt further. John dispatched off Sundar, while Springer sprung off Armaan Jaffer to bring down India to 50/5.
Just as it when looked like India would cross the 100-run mark, Khan stepped up. He put up a 37-run stand for the sixth wicket with Mahipal Lomror, and then after following the loss of Lomror’s wicket, put up a seventh wicket partnership for 29-runs with Mayank Dagar raising 100-runs for India. In the process, Khan also brought up his seventh half-century in the tournament. Following the loss of Dagar’s and Khan’s wicket, Rahul Batham tried his hand at resurrecting what was left of the sagging Indian morale to boost the total to a respectable 145.
Joseph and John were the leading wicket-takers for West Indies, each picking three apiece. Keemo Paul picked two wickets, while Chemar Holder and Shamar Springer had one wicket each.
Avesh Khan and Lomror started off the Indian bowling attack resiliently sending back both openers –Gidron Pope and Tevin Imlach – early. But skipper Shimron Hetmyer and Keacy Carty put up a 39-run stand for the third wicket to keep the West Indian hopes high. Though West Indies lost three quick wickets thereafter that of Hetmyer, Springer and Goolie; Keemo Paul gave ample support to Carty to finally see the West Indians through to their maiden U-19 World Cup win.
Carty and Paul put up a 69-run stand for the sixth wicket that saw Carty and Paul remaining unbeaten at 52 and 40 runs respectively. Mayank Dagar picked three wickets for India, while Lomror and Khan had one wicket each.
For his half-century, Carty was awarded as man of the match, while Bangladesh captain Mehdi Hasan Miraz was acknowledged as man of the series.