Under-19 World Cup 2016 February 1, 2016

Rishabh Pant slams fastest fifty in huge India win

ESPNcricinfo staff
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Tariq Stanikzai struck nine fours and a six in his 48-ball 56 © International Cricket Council

Group D

India Under-19 opener Rishabh Pant had the fastest recorded U-19 international century comfortably in his sights when he was dismissed for 78 off 24 balls, having blown Nepal Under-19 away in a small chase. Pant did break the record for the fastest recorded U-19 fifty though, getting there in 18 balls, one faster than the previous mark. He added 124 in 9.1 overs with his captain Ishan Kishan, who scored 52 off 40 balls. India eventually chased down Nepal's score of 169 with 179 balls to spare in Mirpur.

Pant attacked from the start, slogging the first ball of the innings to the midwicket boundary, and did not relent. He targeted the arc between deep square leg and long-on with a series of pulls and lofts, paying little heed to whether the delivery demanded caution. Nepal were rattled and fed him shorter lengths at hittable pace and Pant feasted. Kishan had been quieter initially, but once the spinners came on he used his feet superbly, stepping out of this crease to get to the pitch of the ball and swinging without inhibition. Pant began to drive, slap and loft over the off side too as his range expanded against a wilting attack. His strike rate of 325 meant that had he scored 22 more runs in singles Pant would have still broken the record for the fastest u-19 hundred by seven deliveries.

India's seven-wicket victory was set up by their bowlers, though, who restricted Nepal to 160 in a match shortened to 48 overs a side because of early-morning fog. Opener Sandeep Sunar top scored with 37 but the rest of the top four batsmen were dismissed in single digits. They had also slogged at India's attack but had no success. Seamer Avesh Khan took 3 for 34, while left-arm spinner Mayank Dagar and offspinner Washington Sundar took two apiece.

New Zealand Under-19s ended the group stage with a consolation win, as a 141-run partnership between Finn Allen and Dale Phillips steered them to a four-wicket win over Ireland Under-19s in Fatullah. Phillips joined Allen after seamer Rory Anders had picked up four wickets to reduce New Zealand to 45 for 4 in pursuit of 213.

The pair got the chase back on track with a brisk partnership spanning 20.4 overs, with Phillips scoring 58 off 66 balls (7x4) before falling lbw to Fiachra Tucker. Then, with New Zealand a mere seven runs from victory, Tucker dismissed Allen for 97 off 76 balls (9x4, 4x6), before Rachin Ravindra and Nathan Smith took them home with 47 balls remaining.

Sent in to bat, Ireland got to 100 for 1, thanks to an 85-run second-wicket stand between Jack Tector (56 off 83) and Adam Dennison (46 off 56), before spinners Ravindra and Josh Finnie picked up three wickets apiece and engineered a slump that saw them lose their last nine wickets for 112 runs.

Group B

A half-century from Tariq Stanikzai gave Afghanistan Under-19s their first win of the tournament, lifting them to a four-wicket win in a low-scoring match against Canada Under-19s in Sylhet. Stanikzai scored 56 off 48 balls, with nine fours and a six, as Afghanistan chased down a target of 148 in only 24.1 overs. They lost a few wickets while doing so, though, with left-arm spinner Shlok Patel and offspinner Miraj Patel sharing five wickets between them.

Having chosen to bat, Canada lost three of their top four for ducks and slipped to 31 for 4 before their captain Abraash Khan (33) and Arslan Khan (38) put on the only substantial partnership of their innings, 62 for the fifth wicket. Wickets fell steadily thereafter, with No. 9 Kurt Ramdath's 20 the next-highest score of the innings, as Canada were bowled out for 147 off the last ball of their allotted 50 overs. Medium-pacer Muslim Musa and offspinner Shamsurrahman picked up three wickets each for Afghanistan.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Diaz54 on February 6, 2016, 2:43 GMT

    This guy trousers looks a good bat.

  • Dev Mithra on February 2, 2016, 8:54 GMT

    The people who are saying england will beat srilanka by looking at their group performances. Seriously? They didn't face even a single sc team so wait and watch when srilanka destroys them. Am an indian though, if you're confusing me with a srilankan fan am not. Sri lanka are a very good side. Its going to be 4 sc team in the semis and no matter who wins, it only proves SC teams have the best young talent in the world.

  • pitch_curator on February 2, 2016, 8:02 GMT

    @ THERIPPER - Who are you to advise me on what I need to do. Mind your business. I have seen Pant bat and I have also seen a lot of others bat. Even an average batsman can tear apart mediocre bowling attacks. Pant has just started his first class career and he has not faced quality bowling attacks yet. Samson has a decent first class record and has shown class whenever he played quality bowlers. If you are assuming that Pant can come and do his "clean hitting" against the likes of Starc and Morkel, then please wake up. Top order batsmen need to have a sound technique first and his has not been tested yet. Lets see how well he fares in this years IPL (if he gets picked) before judging him. @ Kartcric - IMO Dhawan is not a reliable batsman in challenging conditions. This has been proven on many occasions. Whenever the ball does a bit, he is a sitting duck. He was exposed badly in England as well as in the Aus tests. Even in ODIs if the ball swings a bit, he is a goner.

  • Publickakaptan on February 2, 2016, 6:53 GMT

    Yesterday bowled very badly especially Mavi as well their fielding was below par against Nepal...Batham looked more confident bowler then Mavi.....plus Batham is better batsmen than Mavi....Please don't experiment now....Khaleel Ahmed should have given been more overs...so that his confidence comes back.He is our strike bowler..He got 5 wicket against Pakistan...Nepal pace attack is poor compared to Ireland & NZ...So we batted so well..Also we batted 2nd first time...Against Ireland & NZ pace attack especially against the moving ball our frontline batsmen struggled.

  • TheRipper on February 2, 2016, 6:34 GMT

    PITCH_CURATOR - You better concentrate on preparing pitches instead of judging a batsman's caliber. Have you seen Pant bat? His clean hitting reminded one of Yuvraj from his U-19 days. And Samson seriously? Has he done anything of worth in the last year to even deserve a mention.

  • switchmitch on February 2, 2016, 5:57 GMT

    Sarfraz's batting has uncanny resemblance to Javed Miandad. Simple style, with a lot of cheekiness and innovation. It was effective for Javed, don't see why it can't be for Sarfraz. He's the one to watch out for in the next few years.

  • sushreyo96 on February 2, 2016, 2:37 GMT

    I came to the comment section just to see the Gilchrist references, and I was not disappointed!! :D

  • Kulaputra on February 2, 2016, 0:24 GMT

    Nepal was a surprise package and good luck to them in senior tournaments too

  • gimme-a-greentop on February 1, 2016, 22:46 GMT

    Never seen him bat before today so know nothing about him, but Sarfaraz had a hint of lazy elegance to his batting that was great to watch. As the commentators mentioned, a sort of Aravinda/Laxman hybrid. Indian youngsters sure had all the shots in the book!

  • IndianInnerEdge on February 1, 2016, 20:25 GMT

    Well done to our Nepalese brothers, even if they lost to india, beating ireland and NZ is a tremendous achievement...all the best for future games, love and respect from india-we are but one....cricinfo please publish

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