Pedigreed India hold the aces as Bangladesh look to make history

The Indians get a commemorative selfie after winning the semi-final against Pakistan ICC via Getty

Big picture

This is about as big as it gets for the Under-19 cricketers from Bangladesh and India. For India, it's an opportunity to defend their title and claim a record fifth World Cup crown [Australia are next with three]. For Bangladesh, it's a chance to win their first World Cup, any World Cup.

Both sides are unbeaten so far and there's not much to separate them. If India have Kartik Tyagi and Sushant Mishra with the searing pace upfront, Bangladesh have the rapid Tanzim Hasan Sakib and the accurate Shoriful Islam to counter that. For a Ravi Bishnoi, there's a Rakibul Hasan, for a Yashasvi Jaiswal there's a Tanzid Hasan. They are evenly matched all right.

ALSO READ: Where the Under-19 World Cup final will be won and lost

The last time the two sides played each other at an Under-19 World Cup was in 2018, in the quarter-final, and India finished victorious. But they have faced off seven times since then in other competitions, two of those games abandoned because of the weather. India do hold a 4-1 edge in the completed games, but they have been close encounters. At the 2018 Asia Cup semi-final, India sneaked through with a two-run win, while in the 2019 Asia Cup final, India won by five runs. The last time Bangladesh beat India - in England last July - they won by two wickets. If nerves don't get in the way of skills, expect another nail-biter in the final here.

Heavy rain is expected at some point on both Sunday, and Monday's reserve day. Tournament rules say that if both days are washed out, the World Cup will be shared. How the two sides navigate their way while taking the conditions into consideration will be an interesting subplot. Fans of both countries will throng the JB Marks Oval to support their team, emotions will run high, and it's up to the youngsters to make the occasion a memorable one, become heroes, if they can.

Form guide

India WWWWW (last five completed matches, most recent first)

Bangladesh WWWWW

In the spotlight

Kartik Tyagi, the India bowler who consistently bowls at 135 kph, can be the difference. Bangladesh's top order has been consistent, barring the rain-hit game against Pakistan, and if India are to win, his ten overs - both with the new ball and the older one - will hold massive importance. His 11 wickets in the tournament have come at an economy rate of less than 3.50 and he has taken a wicket every 18.7 deliveries.

Bangladesh's No. 3 Mahmudul Hasan Joy has paid his team back for backing him through the tournament. Despite a poor start to the World Cup, he has grown in confidence as it has progressed, and it was on show during the semi-final, when he struck a match-winning 100 against New Zealand. He's Bangladesh's highest run-scorer here and if he can produce an innings that matches his tournament average of 58.66, Bangladesh will be well placed to win their first World Cup.

Team news

Both sides are likely to stay unchanged for the final. There are no injury concerns for either team.

India (possible): 1 Yashasvi Jaiswal, 2 Divyaansh Saxena, 3 Tilak Varma, 4 Dhruv Jurel (wk), 5 Priyam Garg (capt), 6 Siddhesh Veer, 7 Atharva Ankolekar, 8 Ravi Bishnoi, 9 Sushant Mishra, 10 Kartik Tyagi, 11 Aakash Singh

Bangladesh (possible): 1 Parvez Hossain Emon, 2 Tanzid Hasan, 3 Mahmudul Hasan Joy, 4 Towhid Hridoy, 5 Shahadat Hossain, 6 Shamim Hossain, 7 Akbar Ali (capt, wk), 8 Rakibul Hasan, 9 Shoriful Islam, 10 Tanzim Hasan Sakib, 11 Hasan Murad

Pitch and conditions

They will be playing on the same surface as the first semi-final, when India beat Pakistan. There were no demons in the surface; although Pakistan were all out for a sub-200 total, India chased it down with ten wickets in hand. Thunderstorms are expected on Sunday (and Monday) afternoon, although the morning will offer a window of uninterrupted play.

Stats and trivia

  • With 312 runs in five games, Jaiswal is almost certain to finish the tournament as the highest run-scorer. Mahmudul, the second-highest run-scorer featuring in the game, is 124 behind him.

  • The average first-innings score at the ground this World Cup has been 201.5.

  • India have bowled their opponents out in every World Cup game.

  • The team batting second has won four of the last five Under-19 World Cup finals.

B'desh U19 2nd innings Partnerships

1st50Tanzid HasanParvez Hossain Emon
2nd12Parvez Hossain EmonMahmudul Hasan Joy
3rd?Towhid HridoyParvez Hossain Emon
3rd?Shahadat Hossain (3)Towhid Hridoy
4th3Shahadat Hossain (3)Akbar Ali
5th20Akbar AliShamim Hossain
6th17Akbar AliAvishek Das
7th41Akbar AliParvez Hossain Emon
8th27Akbar AliRakibul Hasan