Qualifiers Nepal caused the first major upset of the ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup when it stunned New Zealand by 32 runs in a Group D match in Fatullah yesterday.
Nepal, which won the qualifying event in Malaysia last year to return to the World Cup after missing the previous tournament in 2014, bowled out the Kiwis for 206 after it was set a 239-run target. While captain Raju Rijal top-scored for Nepal with 48, seamer Dipender Airee’s three wickets and off-spinner Prem Tamang’s two helped clinch the dramatic win.
Dale Phillips scored 41 to make a late victory bid for New Zealand before he was last out to spark joyous celebrations in the Nepalese camp. “This was a great win for us,” said Rijal. “We fielded brilliantly to effect three run-outs and that turned the match for us.” New Zealand skipper Josh Finnie said his side messed up what should have been a comfortable run-chase. “We made the target more difficult for ourselves,” he said. “We must now win the next two games against India and Ireland if we are to progress.”
Three-time champion India overcame a shaky start against Ireland to open its campaign with a 79-run victory in Mirpur in another Group D match. India was reduced to 55 for four after being sent in to bat, before Sarfaraz Khan and Washington Sundar pulled their side out of trouble with a 110-run stand for the fifth wicket.
Sarfaraz smashed 74 off 70 balls which included seven boundaries, while left-handed Sundar hit a polished 62. Irish seamers Rory Anders and Joshua Little picked up three wickets each, but tail-ender Zeeshan Ansari boosted India’s total with a run-a-ball 36 at the end. Ireland was bowled out for 189 in reply as Rahul Batham took three for 15 and Avesh Khan finished with two for 24.
In Group B games played in Sylhet, Pakistan crushed Afghanistan by six wickets and Sri Lanka overpowered Canada by 196 runs.
Afghanistan 126 all out, 41.2 overs (Tariq Stanikzai 53; Shadab Khan 4-9, Hasan Mohsin 3-24) lost to
Pakistan 129-4, 31.3 overs (Zeeshan Malik 29, Hasan Mohsin 28 not out, Mohammad Umar 25; Zia-ur-Rehman 2-31) by six wickets
Sri Lanka 315-6, 50 overs (Charith Asalanka 76, Shammu Ashan 74, Kaveen Bandara 61, Vishad de Silva 51; Abdul Haseeb 2-65) bt Canada 119 all out, 39.2 overs (Arslan Khan 42 not out; Lahiru Kumara 2-22, Thilan Nimesh 2-19, Damitha Silva 2-16) by 196 runs
India 268-9, 50 overs (Sarfaraz Khan 74, Washington Sundar 62, Zeeshan Ansari 36; Rory Anders 3-35, Joshua Little 3-52) bt Ireland 189 all out, 49.1 overs (Lorcan Tucker 57, William McClintock 58; Avesh Khan 2-24, Rahul Batham 3-15) by 79 runs
Nepal 238-7, 50 overs (Raju Rijal 48, Sandeep Sunar 39, Aarif Sheikh 39, Kushal Bhurtel 35 not out; Nathan Smith 3-58) bt New Zealand 206 all out, 47.1 overs (Glenn Phillips 52, Josh Finnie 37, Dale Phillips 41; Dipendra Airee 3-24, Prem Tamang 2-38) by 32 runs
Group A – Namibia v Scotland, SKICS, Cox’s Bazar
Group C – England v West Indies, ZACS, Chittagong
Group C – Fiji v Zimbabwe, MA Aziz, Chittagong
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