U19 World Cup Finals: Clinical India Becomes World Champion, Thanks To Manjot Kalra's Applaudable Ton

| February 3 , 2018 , 19:02 IST

Men in blue had a stellar journey throughout the U19 World Cup 2018 and the countrymen were expecting the team to bring the fourth World Cup home. Under the leadership of Prithvi Shaw, India thrashed Australia to win the tournament at Bay Oval on Saturday.

Taking a look at the performances so far, there were high chances of India taking the prestigious trophy home. Notably, both the competing teams have earned the coveted title thrice before and were looking forward to creating a history by winning their fourth U19 World Cup.

Australia started the first innings with bat and finished off with 216 runs on board. The Rahul Dravid-coached team was able to bowl their opponents out in 47.2 overs. Aussie all-rounder Jonathan Merlo's 102-ball 76 became the first innings' highlight.

Starting their chase, Indian openers Manjot Kalra and skipper Prithvi Shaw came to the field and immediately started blasting runs at the Aussie bowlers. Occasional drizzling halted the match for few minutes with India at 0-23 but men in blue made a full-force comeback after the little break.

After many attempts, Australian pacer Will Sutherland claimed his first wicket and dismissed skipper Shaw with 41-ball 29 in hand during the 11th over. Shubman Gill took over the field and his outstanding partnership with Kalra entertained the spectators until Param Uppal bowled him in 21st over. Harvik Desai came to the field on number 4.

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Dodging all attempts of Aussie pacers to bowl Kalra and Desai, the winsome duo lead the team to an outstanding victory. Fours and Sixes were showering throughout the field as the duo moved forward towards their ultimate goal.

With Param Uppal missing a chance to catch out Kalra at 99, the magnificent player completed his historic ton before his partner in crime Harvik Desai finished the match in style with a four with a ball remaining in the 38th over.

The inequitable 75-run partnership between Param Uppal and Merlo was a life-saver for Australia after losing 3 wickets for 59 runs in 12 overs. Aussie openers Max Bryant (14) and Jack Edwards (28) were easily dismissed by medium pacer Ishan Porel, thanks to extra bounce outside off stump.

Australia lost their skipper Jason Sangha outside the edge with only 13 runs in hand to Kamlesh Nagarkoti's ball. Uppal and Merlo's applaudable 4th-wicket run was shredded in 29th over as the legspinner Anukul Roy dismissed Param for 34.

Nathan McSweeney's 23 off 29 contributed to Australia's 5-183 in 40 overs before Shiva Singh halted his game. Australia added only 33 runs in the next overs and lost all wickets including Roy's marvellous 2-32 off seven overs in 47.2 overs, giving India the target of 217 runs to chase.

With 8 wickets remaining, India won the 2018 U19 World Cup.