Australia Under-19 captain Mitchell Marsh has commended the team effort that gave his side a narrow two-wicket victory against Sri Lanka in the World Cup semi-final. After bowling Sri Lanka out for 205 in 48.2 overs, Australia faltered in the chase, losing regular wickets before getting across the line with nine balls to spare.
"I think run-chases in finals are always pretty tough and they're the sort of games you never win two or three down," Marsh said. "It's a credit to the boys at the end who stuck to their guns and got us over the line."
Marsh led from the front, scoring 97 of 110 balls, including twelve fours. Even as wickets fell around him, he continued to keep the score ticking over, eventually finding able support in wicketkeeper Tom Triffitt, who made 50. The two put on 78 for the sixth wicket and Marsh noted the importance of the crucial stand, which rescued them from 93 for 5.
"When you get those sorts of scores you always want to go on and make hundreds but it was a pretty good catch and at the end of the day it was just important for us to get the win," Marsh said. "Being 5 for 93 at one stage, I think we've done pretty well to win and my partnership with Triff [Triffitt] towards the end there was pivotal and that's what you need in these sorts of games."
The form of the Australian fast bowlers through the tournament has been impressive and Marsh said he was pleased with their efforts to pin down Sri Lanka to 205. "You always want to bat first on tracks like that but credit to the way the boys came out and the attitude of the fielders and bowlers," Marsh said. "In these sorts of games if you can bowl consistently good areas you're always going to get wickets and that's what the two big guys [Josh Hazlewood and Alister McDermott] did at the start."
Marsh also said he had set his sights on the final against Pakistan on Saturday. He said he was excited about the challenge ahead and hoped to return home with the big prize. "Pakistan's going to be a tough encounter, they're a very well-drilled side and if we can just keep doing the basics right then I think we're in for a good day Saturday," he said. "They've got a fair bit of experience at the top of the order and a few good spinners so we'll look to counter them and hopefully we can do the job."