Australia followed the lead of their senior team as they shut down Pakistan's challenge to claim their third Under-19 World Cup trophy. Pakistan's top side has lost seven matches in a row in Australia recently and Azeem Ghumman's boys had a chance to give the country some cheer when they held their opponents to 207 for 9. It proved to be too many as Josh Hazlewood and Australia's spinners took control to dismiss Pakistan for 182 to end a nervy chase.
When Hazlewood finished the match with his fourth wicket Australia added the prize to their triumphs at home in 1987-88 and in New Zealand in 2001-02. They had relied on Luke Doran's impressive 3 for 32 and Hazlewood's 4 for 30 to stop Pakistan's unbeaten run, while Jason Floros' 1 for 19 off eight was also important.
Ahmed Shehzad and Ghumman threatened to take their team to victory but both fell after solid displays to allow Australia the advantage. Ghumman had accumulated cleverly with 41 off 90, willing his team to victory over the second half of the innings, but when he was bowled by the offspinner Floros in the 43rd over the end was near.
Shehzad, who has played six limited-overs games for the senior outfit, showed his class with some smart boundaries early in the chase, but he was slow to leave with 38 off 48 after pushing forward to the left-arm spinner Doran and being given out lbw. Babar Azam, the 15-year-old opener, followed for 28 two overs later with an under-edge to give Doran his second and bring the Australians back into the contest. Babar was also unhappy and Pakistan were edgy at 74 for 3, adding five runs in five overs.
Rameez Azis, who was mostly cautious in his 23, danced down to Doran and launched him for a six to long off, but grew over-confident and was bowled cutting in the same over. Doran was just as impressive as his slow-bowling opponents, who caused regular doubt for Australia's batsmen.
The fast bowler Hazlewood, who collected the opening wicket, was called back in the middle and had success almost immediately when he dismissed Hammad Azam for 0, the first time he has been out in the tournament. Pakistan were 111 for 5 and had a further concern in the changing weather, with the wind starting to blow hard and disrupting play on a handful of occasions.
With Pakistan needing 75 off 15 overs, Mitchell Marsh brought on the medium-pacer Alex Keath and he struck with his third ball when Mohammad Waqas (13) edged behind and the ball deflected from the wicketkeeper's gloves to Hazlewood at short third man. Pakistan could claim to be unlucky at times but ultimately their batsmen were unable to follow the strong work of their bowlers.
After winning the toss, the Pakistani fast men struck some key blows before the spinners suffocated the middle order. Kane Richardson muscled a run-a-ball 44 and Tim Armstrong compiled 37 as they were able to escape towards the end of the innings to post a respectable total that allowed them to take the main prize.
Richardson, who was called in to play instead of Nick Buchanan, showed his power with two sixes and three fours, including 16 off five balls from Hammad, before he holed out to long-on. Sarmad Bhatti followed up by bowling Armstrong next ball, missing the hat-trick but picking up 3 for 33.
Under sunny skies, Australia fell to 23 for 3 on a brown surface and were relieved when Floros and Keath combined for 57, but those two departed quickly to leave the side at 82 for 5. The spinners were superb as they tied down the middle order, with Raza Hasan, the left-arm orthodox, allowing only six runs from his first six overs on the way to 1 for 21 from 10 as he remained a threat at the death.
The legspinners Usman Qadir, who had 0 for 35 off 10, and Shehzad (0 for 22 off seven) added to the confusion before the offspiner Babar was brought on. Babar picked up Tom Triffitt (21) with an edge from an attempted cut, dropping Australia to 127 for 6, but gave up 12 in the last of his six overs when taken for a six and a four by Richardson. In all the slow men delivered 33 overs for 112 runs.
Pakistan made an excellent start when Nic Maddinson was lbw to Fayyaz Butt on the fifth ball and in the next over Tom Beaton glided Sarmad straight to Babar, who took a sharp catch above his head at second slip. Australia soon had even more problems following the departure of the captain Marsh (7) after he prodded defensively to a Fayyaz outswinger and was caught behind by Waqas. Each time they were able to hit back and will leave New Zealand weighed down by a coveted trophy.