U-19 Asia Cup: India knocked out after thrashing loss to Bangladesh

(Image credit-Daily News)

Kuala Lumpur: Defending U-19 Asia Cup champions India were knocked out of the tournament after they faced a thrashing defeat at the hands of Bangladesh by eight wickets with four overs to spare at the Royal Selagnor Club in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday.

In a rain-affected contest, Bangladesh won the toss and decided to bowl first and  the move paid off as they regularly picked wickets to leave Indian reeling at 85/4 at one stage. The Indian colts, who were without the services of two of their most important batsmen-Shubman Gill and Prithvi Shaw put on a sorry display with the bat as no batsman in the entire line-up managed to cross the 50-run mark.

Coming in at number seven, Salman Khan top scored with 39 runs while like Harvik Desai (21) and Anuj Rawat (34) didn’t capitalise on the starts they got.

The Indians who needed to win this match to stay alive in the tournament failed to show any intent and thus, ended up being restricted to 187/8, making the job for Bangladesh, a relatively easy one.

Opening for Bangladesh, Pinak Ghosh and Mohammad Naim Sheikh got off to good start as they put up 82 runs together, which took the fight out of the Indians. While Sheikh fell for 38, Mohammad Tawhid Hridoy joined forces with Ghosh stitched an 83-run stand that sealed an impressive victory for them over the defending champions. Ghosh ended the match with an impressive and unbeaten knock of 81 from 77 balls which included six fours and three sixes.

This heavy defeat for the Indians is a second one in a space of three days after they were stunned by Nepal on Sunday. This loss meant that Bangladesh and Nepal would go through to the next stage from Group A where they would lock horns with Afghanistan and Pakistan in the battle for making it to the finals.

This loss is indeed a huge one for Indian coach Rahul Dravid but he isn’t shocked with the result because the veteran Indian batsman opted for a squad with new faces so as to strengthen the pool of players ahead of the U-19 World Cup in New Zealand early next year. He had also earlier laid emphasis on the fact that it’s all about finding out the skills of his players and developing them is what mattered the most ahead of results, at this level.

Brief scores-

India U-19  187/8 (Salman Khan 39, Anuj Rawat 34; Robiul Haque 3/43) lost to Bangladesh U-19  191/2 (Pinak Ghosh 81 n.o, Tawhid Hridoy 48 n.o; Mandeep Singh 2/36) by 8 wickets.

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