Holder bowls West Indies into semi-final
West Indies Under-19 166 (Brathwaite 69, Creary 52, Payne 4-19) beat England Under-19 148 (Stokes 24, Holder 5-19) by 18 runs
Led by half-centuries from Kraigg Brathwaite and Andre Creary, and a five-wicket haul from Jason Holder, West Indies became the first team to qualify for the semi-finals of the Under-19 World Cup. They got there after a tense contest against England, who fell 18 runs short of West Indies' total of 166 in Rangiora.
Rain reduced the quarter-final to a 36-over contest and Azeem Rafiq, the England captain, put West Indies in under testing conditions. The move paid off quickly, when fast man David Payne had Trevon Griffith caught for 5 in the fourth over and bowled John Campbell in the eighth, but England's bowlers soon met with resistance. Brathwaite's innings - 69 off 96 balls - included only four boundaries and was the anchor, while Creary's aggressive 52 off 53 balls provided momentum.
The pair added 103 for the third wicket in less than 20 overs, setting up a platform, but their dismissals in consecutive overs triggered a collapse. Ben Stokes, who had dismissed Creary, took two more quick wickets and West Indies folded from 135 for 2 to 166 all out. Tim Payne returned to pick up two tailenders to finish with 4 for 19.
West Indies' defence was launched by Barbados fast bowler, Jason Holder, who dismissed England's openers for 0 and 9. Nelson Bolan caused further damage, picking up two more to reduce England's chase to 38 for 4. The middle order rallied, with several batsmen getting starts, but none converted them. Ateeq Javid, Stokes and Rafiq scored 20s to keep England in the hunt but John Campbell and Holder struck timely blows. England, at one stage, needed 29 to win with three wickets in hand, but Holder returned to mop up the tail and finish with excellent figures of 5 for 19.
"This was a disappointing end to the tournament after three good performances in the group stages. The players have gelled together as a unit and worked hard during the preparation and competition phases on their own games and for each other," John Abrahams, ECB Elite Player Development Manager, said. "There is no doubt that they have grown as people and cricketers and hopefully they will see proof of that in the coming season."
West Indies will now face Pakistan, who beat India in Saturday's other quarter-final, in the semis.