Friday, March 1, 2024

How India have fared in their eight U-19 World Cup final appearances so far

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India will face Australia in the final of the ICC U-19 World Cup 2024 at Willowmoore Park in Benoni on Sunday, February 11. The Men in Blue will be featuring in their fifth consecutive final in the tournament and ninth overall. They are also the most successful side in the history of the competition, with five titles.

India have been unbeaten in the ICC U-19 World Cup 2024 and have registered some crushing wins. They topped Group A by winning all their three matches by comprehensive margins. The Men in Blue began their journey with an 84-run victory over Bangladesh in Bloemfontein before hammering Ireland and the United States by similar margins of 201 runs at the same venue.

India continued their undefeated run in the Super Six round as well. They thumped New Zealand by a massive margin of 214 runs and then got the better of Nepal by 132 runs. The defending champions were challenged by South Africa in the first semifinal, but held their nerve to register a two-wicket win.

As India gear up to face the Aussies in the ICC Men’s U-19 World Cup 2024 final, we look back at how they have fared in their previous eight appearances in the summit clash of the event.

#1 (2000) – India beat Sri Lanka by 6 wickets, Colombo

Yuvraj Singh was the star of India’s 2000 U-19 World Cup campaign. (Pic: Getty Images)
Yuvraj Singh was the star of India’s 2000 U-19 World Cup campaign. (Pic: Getty Images)

India registered their maiden triumph in the U-19 World Cup when they defeated hosts Sri Lanka by six wickets in Colombo in the final of the 2000 edition.

The Men in Blue were led by Mohammad Kaif in this edition and the squad also featured Yuvraj Singh, Reetinder Sodhi, Ajay Ratra and Venugopal Rao – all of whom went on to play for the senior Indian side with varying degrees of success.

Speaking of the final, Sri Lanka won the toss and batted first, but were restricted to 178 in 48.1 overs as Shalabh Srivastava starred with 3/33. India’s chase was guided by Sodhi (39*) and Niraj Patel (34*), while Yuvraj and Manish Sharma contributed 27 each.

#2 (2006) – India lost to Pakistan by 38 runs, Colombo

India went down to arch-rivals Pakistan by 38 runs in Colombo in the final of the 2006 edition. Cheteshwar Pujara, Rohit Sharma, Ravindra Jadeja and Piyush Chawla featured in the final in which India suffered a batting collapse.

Batting first, Pakistan managed only 109 in 41.1 overs as Chawla picked up four wickets and Jadeja three. However, Anwar Ali starred with 5/35 as the Men in Blue were bundled out for 71 in 18.5 overs.

Pujara was dismissed for a duck, while Rohit was out for 4 and Jadeja 6 as India were 23/7 after eight overs. While Pujara was out for 0 in the final, he was Player of the Series for scoring 349 runs.

#3 (2008) – India beat South Africa by 12 runs (DLS method), Kuala Lumpur

Virat Kohli led the Indian team in the 2008 U-19 World Cup. (Pic: Getty Images)
Virat Kohli led the Indian team in the 2008 U-19 World Cup. (Pic: Getty Images)

India’s second triumph in the U-19 World Cup was registered in 2008 when they beat South Africa by 12 runs (DLS method) in the final in Kuala Lumpur. This side was led by current batting superstar Virat Kohli and also featured Jadeja and Manish Pandey.

The Proteas bowled first after winning the toss and did a great job restricting India to 159 as Tanmay Srivastava (46) was the only batter to make a significant score.

South Africa were set a revised target of 116 in 25 overs, but India’s bowlers came up with a strong effort to restrict the opposition to 103/8. Ajitesh Argal, Jadeja and Siddarth Kaul all claimed two wickets each.

#4 (2012) – India beat Australia by 6 wickets, Townsville

India got the better of Australia by six wickets in Townsville in the 2012 U-19 World Cup final. The side was led by Unmukt Chand, who has now retired from Indian cricket and plays league cricket in the USA.

Ironically, Chand was the Player of the Match in the 2012 U-19 World Cup final, but could not build on his impressive performance. India bowled first in the game and held the Aussies to 225/8 as Sandeep Sharma claimed 4/54.

Skipper Chand then guided the chase with an unbeaten 111 off 130 balls, while Smit Patel contributed 62* off 84.

#5 (2016) – India lost to West Indies by 5 wickets, Mirpur

The Men in Blue went down to the West Indies by five wickets in Mirpur in the final of the 2016 U-19 World Cup. India were led by Ishan Kishan in the tournament and the talented squad featured Rishabh Pant, Washington Sundar and Sarfaraz Khan.

Sent into bat by the Windies, India were all out for 145 in 45.1 overs as Sarfaraz played a lone hand with 51 off 89 balls. For the bowling side, Alzarri Joseph and Ryan John claimed three wickets each, while Keemo Paul picked up two.

West Indies got past the target in 49.3 overs despite Mayank Dagar’s 3/25.

#6 (2018) – India beat Australia by 8 wickets, Mount Maunganui

India’s 2018 U-19 World Cup squad (Pic: Getty Images)
India’s 2018 U-19 World Cup squad (Pic: Getty Images)

India registered a comprehensive eight-wicket win over Australia at Mount Maunganui in the final of the 2018 U-19 World Cup.

In a dominant performance, India held the Aussies to 216 in 47.2 overs after losing the toss and bowling first. Four bowlers claimed two wickets each. Opener Manjot Kalra then scored 101* off 102 balls, while Harvik Desai remained unbeaten on 47 off 61 as India cruised to victory in 38.5 overs.

The victorious Indian side was led by Prithvi Shaw and also featured Shubman Gill, Riyan Parag and Shivam Mavi.

#7 (2020) – India lost to Bangladesh by 3 wickets, Potchefstroom

India were stunned by Bangladesh by three wickets in the 2020 U-19 World Cup final in Potchefstroom. The Priyam Garg-led side went into the final as favorites, but failed to come to the party on the big day.

Sent into bat by Bangladesh, the Men in Blue were held to 177 in 47.2 overs despite Yashasvi Jaiswal’s 88 off 121 balls. India fought hard with the ball, but Parvez Hossain Emon (47 off 79) and skipper Akbar Ali (43* off 77) lifted Bangladesh to victory in a heated final.

Apart from Jaiswal, Tilak Varma, Dhruv Jurel, Ravi Bishnoi and Kartik Tyagi also featured in the 2020 U-19 World Cup final.

#8 (2022) – India beat England by 4 wickets, North Sound

India registered a hard-fought four-wicket win over England in the 2022 U-19 World Cup final in North Sound, Antigua.

England won the toss and batted first in the final, but India came up with a very good performance to restrict the opposition to 189 in 44.5 overs. Raj Bawa starred with 5/31, while Ravi Kumar claimed 4/34.

In the chase, the Men in Blue lost Angkrish Raghuvanshi for a second-ball duck. Shaik Rasheed (50 off 84), Nishant Sindhu (50* off 54) and Raj Bawa (35 off 54) then combined to lift India to their fifth U-19 World Cup title as they got home in 47.4 overs.

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Edited by Renin Wilben Albert

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