There was a lot of hype and buzz created as usual because the arch-rivals were about to meet each other in the semi-final of the ICC U19 World Cup 2020.
However, much to the disappointment of the Pakistani fans, the match couldn’t live up to its expected hype as the Indian U19 team thumped the green shirts with a 10-wicket victory in the semi-final. The match started on a glossy morning as the men in green opted to bat first after winning the toss.
Right from the word go, the Indian bowlers were on target and the Pakistani batters were on the back foot. Apart from a few occasional boundaries, the momentum never tilted towards Pakistan in the whole innings.
There were a few positives with the bat as the opener Haider Ali stroked a decent half-century at the top of the order. Captain Rohail Nazir also scored a laborious half-century but consumed way too many balls and never looked in complete control throughout his innings.
Pakistan could only score 172 and the Indian bowlers were at their best throughout the innings. Pacers Kartik Tyagi and Sushant Mishra shared five wickets between them whilst the spinners Ravi Bishnoi and Atharva Ankolekar were also on top of their game.
Yashashvi Jaiswal, the part-timer took the crucial wicket of Haider Ali when he was looking good. However, nobody would have thought that the chase of 172 is going to be a walk in the park for the India U19 side. Both the openers took their time initially and the new ball was dealt with properly.
Divyaansh Saxena and Yashashvi Jaiswal looked in complete control throughout the innings and none of the Pakistani bowlers threatened the Indian openers.
Yashashvi continued his great form in the ongoing U19 World Cup and he reached his first century of the tournament after scoring a couple of half-centuries early on in the tournament.
The stage was set for the youngster to showcase his talent and he grabbed the opportunity with both hands against a dream opposition.
During their chase of 172, Yashashvi and Saxena opened the innings with great authority and both of them played some delightful strokes against the strong pace-attack of Pakistan.
The Pakistani bowlers looked completely out of sorts as the boys in green couldn’t take a single wicket throughout the 35 overs they bowled.
Yashashvi scored 105* off 113 balls with 8 fours and 4 huge sixes. On the other hand, Divyaansh Saxena first changed the complexion of the whole match with his breathtaking catch at the boundary and then came in to showcase his maturity with the bat as well.
Divyaansh brilliantly played a supportive role in Yashashvi’s century and reached his half-century in the much-anticipated semi-final.
Saxena scored 59 off 99 balls to make sure he stays with Jaiswal till the end. In the 2nd semi-final of the tournament, the Bengal Tigers will take on the Kiwis to decide who will take on the mighty Indian side in the finals on the 8th of February.