The Under-19 teams of India and Australia will go head-to-head in the World Cup (WC) final on Saturday at Mount Manganui. India, who have been unbeaten in the tournament, start as favourites against an Australian side, who has been slightly inconsistent for their standards. With the final so close, let’s take a look at some interesting numbers.
Gill going for the kill
Knight, Shubman Gill has been one of the reasons for India’s impressive show in the U-19 WC. Smashing 341 runs in 4 innings, which is the highest by an Indian and third highest in the tournament, Gill has come out as the leader of the batting line-up. With scores of 90*, 86 and 102* in the last three matches, the dashing batsman has rightly won three consecutive Man of the Match awards as well. His average of 170.50 is the best in the tournament and the whole nation would be expecting another big score from our in-form Knight.
Upper hand over Aussies in U-19 WC
India have met Australia 5 times in the U-19 WC so far, with the Boys in Blue winning the last three encounters quite comfortably. India are in fact, on a 7-game winning streak against the Aussies (in all competitions) and would love to extend the run. Talking about the past encounters, in the semi-final of 2000 under the captaincy of Mohammad Kaif, India defeated Australia by a big margin of 170 runs. Unmukt Chand led Indian side met Australia in the Final of 2012 U-19 WC. Chasing a target of 226, India went to win the game in 47.4 overs to secure their third title. The current Indian side started the 2018 WC campaign with a 100-run win over Aussies and would certainly feel confident going into the Final.
Spark at the top
A strong start at the top makes things easy for the batsmen to follow and India has been terrific in this regard. There has been a 50+ partnership between the first three batsmen in each of the five matches, which shows India’s solidity at the top. Together, they have scored 618 runs at an average of 103, which also underlines the fact that, a positive beginning can help you win matches comfortably. The 180-run stand between Prithvi Shaw and Manjot Kalra in the first match of this WC is in fact, the 2nd highest partnership for any wicket against Australia U19 team in ODIs.
Most appearances in Finals
India have made it a habit of reaching in the finals of Under-19 World Cups. In fact, they will overtake arch-rivals Pakistan for the record of most appearances, with their sixth appearance in U-19 WC Finals. India and Australia have each won the World Cup thrice and it would be interesting to see who will win it for a record fourth time.
The bowling Knights
India has been magnificent with the ball as well. They have taken 47 wickets in 5 matches in the ongoing campaign, bowling out the opposition four times. In the 5 matches played, Knights Shivam Mavi and Kamlesh Nagarkoti, have impressed with their good pace to take 8 and 7 wickets respectively.
It has been a perfect tournament for India so far and a lot will be expected from our three Knights and the whole team when they take the field on Saturday. Our best wishes to the entire team!