India Under-19 team remained undefeated in the group stages of the U-19 World Cup as they thrashed Zimbabwe in the final clash of their Group B. Pursuing a lowly target of 155 runs, India were never expected to face any trouble given the prowess of the Indian U-19 stars. Shubman Gill (90*) and Harvik Desai (54*) gave India a healthy start which soon materialised into a comfortable victory. Now the U-19 men in blue will march on to the quarter-final to face Bangladesh.
While the Indian batsmen devastated Zimbabwe’s bowling line-up, India bowlers proved to be the edge that was needed to move past the group stage. India bowled out Zimbabwe for 154 runs in their final group B clash of the Under-19 World Cup.
India U-19 bowlers are ruling international cricket
Zimbabwe had won the toss and had elected to bat. Their start was as slow as it could get as the Indian bowlers’ impeccable line and length pushed back Zimbabwe with three early wickets.
Star bowlers, Shivam Mavi and Arshdeep Singh, picked up two wickets quite early. And when Zimbabwe looked to up their game with a partnership between Milton Shumba and Liam Roche, Indian left-arm spinner Anukul Roy dismissed two wickets in just three deliveries, before going on to pick another wicket in his next over. At this point, Zimbabwe was six wickets down with score nowhere near where it should have been.
To burden the Zimbabwe team with even more despair, Abhishek Sharma dismissed two wickets, Arshdeep Singh picked up another while Anukul Roy took his fourth wicket to wrap up Zimbabwe in the 49th over.
Shubman Gill and Harvik Desai ended Zimbabwe’s misery
The 155-run target was easily chased by India, when Shubman Gill and Harvik Desai shared a 156-run opening wicket stand to steer India to a big win, which also saw the men in blue end on the top of their group with a 3-0 win in group stages.
Shubman Gill was named the Man of the Match for his impressive display with the bat. He said after the match that he was just following the orders that India U-19 coach, Rahul Dravid, had given to him. As reported by Cricbuzz, Shubman Gill said,
“It was a pretty good wicket to bat on. We just capitalized on the start we got and I just tried to play straight. He (Rahul Dravid) just told to go out and play your game and be impressive. The pitches are all pretty good to bat on. It is always good to bat with Desai.”
The India U-19 captain Prithvi Shaw, who is rising quickly in the Indian cricketing ranks, spoke about the team’s performance and said,
“Bowlers again did a really good job, batsmen as well Shubman Gill and Desai doing the job for us. The attitude and intensity on the field really matters for India. We want to continue this process going on. We are playing Bangladesh. We are really looking forward for the quarters. We have got six days break before that, we will practice well and ensure we bring our ‘A’ game.”
Summing up the tragic Zimbabwean loss, their captain Liam Roche said,
“Well done to India, their openers played really well and we didn’t execute our plans well. I definitely want to play for the Zimbabwe academy in England and want to represent the senior team in the future.”