India’s never say die attitude enabled them to retain the Under-19 Asia Cup as they defended 106 runs in the final against Bangladesh at R. Premadasa Stadium on Saturday.

Despite their below par batting performance, some outstanding bowling helped India to win their seventh Asia Cup title by five runs as Bangladesh finished runners-up for the first time.

Champions - INDIA
Player of the Tournament - Arjun Azad (India)

Bangladesh will be kicking themselves as it was their game after bowling out India for 106 inside 33 overs. But their batsmen ruined a golden opportunity with none of the top five reaching double figures.

Left-arm spinner Atharva Ankolekar was terrific finishing with a five wicket haul and he was named Man of the Match. He was well backed up by left-arm quick Akash Singh, who finished with three wickets. It was Akash who made the early inroads claiming three wickets with the new ball in his opening spell. Akash was taken to hospital after bowling five overs  due to multiple cramps.

At 78 for eight, India appeared to have done enough to win the title but Bangladesh fought back with a ninth wicket stand worth 23 runs to edge closer to the target. Hasan  Sakib (12) and  Rakibul Hasan (11 not out) looked to have done enough to take their team across the line.

But there was another twist in the tale as Ankolekar trapped Sakib leg before wicket and  then three balls later sealed the game cleaning up last man Shahin Alam (0) with a faster delivery that the batsman failed to pick.

Ankolekar had also accounted for Bangladesh captain Akbar Ali, who top scored with 23 runs.

India were rocked by some superb bowling as they were three wickets down for eight runs. Skipper Dhruv Jurel provided some resistance scoring 33 runs off 57 balls with two fours and a six. The contribution of 37 runs by tail-ender Karan Lal proved to be decisive as it helped India to stretch their total beyond double figures.

Despite being tested in the final, India will be pleased with the depth they have at age group levels and the presence of so many skilful players augurs well moving forward.

India’s Arjun Azad was named Player of the Tournament. Although he failed in the final, the opening batsman was in good form throughout the competition. Number three batsman Tilak Varma, a 16-year-old was equally impressive.

During the eight nation tournament, several players from all participating teams showcased some tremendous skill and they will go onto excel in the big stage soon.

Sat 14-Sep

FINAL: India v Bangladesh at RPICS
India won the toss and chose to bat
India: 106 all out off 32.4 overs (D.Jurel 33, K.Lal 37; M.Hossain 3-8, M.Mrittunjoy 3-18)
Bangladesh: 101 all out off 33 overs (Akash 3-12, A.Ankolekar 5-28)
Man of the Match: Atharva Ankolekar (India)


Tournament page

Filed September 14th, 2019