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ICC under-19 World Cup: West Indies sneak home in a low-scoring thriller

West Indies win their first under-19 World Cup

Victorious Wets Indies under-19 team
Victorious West Indies under-19 team

West Indies created history by winning their first ever under-19 World Cup as they defeated India by 5 wickets in the finals of the 2016 under-19 World Cup at Mirpur. Chasing a target of 146, Windies crossed the line with just three balls to spare.

India, who went into the finals as favourites were dismissed for just 145 runs in 45.3 overs. It was not a kind of start the Indians would have hoped for as India lost their openers to Alzarri Joseph with just 8 runs on the board and were further reduced to 5-50 soon after.

Sarfaraz Khan waged a lone battle as he scored his fifth fifty in six innings in the tournament. Sarfaraz scored 51 off 89 balls, but he kept on losing wickets at the other end. West Indies bowlers bowled extremely well and made life difficult for the batsmen on a pitch that had a pinch of green over it.

Sarfaraz, along with Mahipal Lomror and Rahul Batham made sure that India went into the three digits. Joseph ended up picking 3-39 and Ryan backed him with 3-38. Keemo Paul scalped two while Holder and Springer took a wicket apiece. 

It was never easy for the bowlers to defend 145, but the Indian pace duo of Avesh Khan and Khaleel Ahmad started well as they dismissed the openers inside the first 10 overs. 

But skipper Shimror Hetmyer and Keacy Carty steadied the ship with a 39-run partnership for the third wicket. Washington Sunder was keeping things tight and it was when Ishan Kishan introduced Mayank Dagar into the attack. 

Dagar struck immediately as he sent back Hetmyer for 23 and followed it by dismissing dangerous Shamar Springer and Jyd Goolie in quick succession and the match was hanging in the balance with the batsmen needing 75 to win from 24 overs with 5 wickets in hand. 

Carty and Keemo Paul started off cautiously and made sure that there were no further hiccups in the chase. Both the batsmen had some luck as they were spilled by Sarfaraz Khan and Rishabh Pant.

They kept the scorecard ticking and kept West Indies in the game before Carty reached his maiden under-19 fifty before Paul top edged Khaleel over the keeper to seal the win. 

Carty top-scored for West Indies with an unbeaten 52 while Paul remained not-out on 40. Dagar was the successful bowler for India as he ended up with 3-25.

Carty was awarded the player of the match and Bangladesh skipper Mehedi Hasan Miraz was named the Player of the tournament.

Brief scores: India 145 (Sarfaraz 51, Batham 21, John 3-38, Joseph 3-39) lost to West Indies 146 for 5 (Carty 52*, Paul 40*, Dagar 3-25) by five wickets

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