Mumbai: The Prithvi Shaw-led India has been playing like a world-class side in the ongoing ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup tournament in New Zealand.
Shaw himself has played a captain’s knock in each and every match, aggregating 232 runs from four innings, whereas the only exception was the group match against Zimbabwe, where his team completed a 10-wicket win.
Shubman Gill has been another cricketer whose reputation has grown after his recent performances. Having already scored three half-centuries ahead of the semifinal against Pakistan, he continued his good form by playing a match-winning knock of 102 in the last four clash. While the batsmen have done well, Indian bowlers have been breathtaking with their pace and guile, running through the oppositions at will.
Ahead of their title clash against Australia, here’s a look at India’s road to the final.
India vs Australia, Group match: India won by 100 runs
The Boys in Blue had a dream start to the tournament in their earlier clash against the Aussies. After winning the toss, India decided to bat first, which seemed to have worked. Prithvi Shaw (94), Manjot Kalra (86) and Shubman Gill (63) were the top-scorers for India as they finished the innings at 328-7. Later on, Shivam Mavi (3/45) and Kamlesh Nagarkoti (3/29) starred as India, who had scored 328 runs batting first, outplayed the 2010 champions in style, winning the match by 100 runs.
India vs Papua New Guinea, Group match: India won by 10 wickets
Undoubtedly, this was one of the most one-sided matches in this year’s edition of the Under-19 World Cup. The Boys in Blue once again won the toss, and put the minnows to bat. PNG’s Ovia Sam was the top-scorer for them, as they were bowled out for just 64 as left-arm spinner Anukul Roy ran through the PNG middle-order scalping five wickets (5/14). The Indians had it easy in reply, as Prithvi Shaw’s unbeaten 36-ball 57-run knock led them to a ten-wicket win.
India vs Zimbabwe, Group match: India won by 10 wickets
Prithvi Shaw’s men posted their second consecutive ten-wicket win, by thrashing Zimbabwe. The African side won the toss and opted to bat. However, it was Anukul Roy who starred with four wickets (4/20), bowling out Zimbabwe for 154. In reply, it was Shubman Gill, who hammered unbeaten 90 runs off 59 balls and wicketkeeper-batsman Harvik Desai scored unbeaten 56 off 73 balls to seal yet another big Indian win.
India vs Bangladesh, Super League Quarterfinal: India won by 131 runs
It was a repeat of the senior Indian men’s team’s clash with Bangladesh in the ICC World Cup 2015 quarterfinal, which ended up in the same result. Batting first, Shubnam Gill steered India to 265 before the Indian bowlers bundled out Bangladesh for 134. Kamlesh Nagarkoti picked up three wickets (3/18) and Shivam Mavi (2/27) and Abhishek Sharma (2/11) scalped two wickets each to steer the 2012 champions to the last four with a 131-run win.
India vs Pakistan, Super League Semifinal: India won by 203 runs
India outplayed Pakistan in another one-sided clash between the two teams as they completed a mammoth 203-run win to set up a final clash with Australia, a replay of the earlier group stage match. While openers Shaw and Manjot scored crucial 40s opening the innings, it was Gill, whose unbeaten hundred (102*) was the highlight of Indian innings as the team scored 272/9 while batting first. In reply, Pakistan lost all hopes of advancing further as they were bowled out for 69, courtesy four wickets by Ishan Porel, who denied Pakistan any opportunity to think of chasing down the Indian total.