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Tom Moody
CWC-U19

U19 CWC: Commentators' predictions for the final

ICC U19 CWC, final predictions

Four members of the ICC U19 CWC commentary team give their predictions ahead of Saturday's final between India and Australia.

ANJUM CHOPRA, former India Women international

Key match-ups? 
The key battles will be Jack Edwards v Shivam Mavi, Jason Sangha v Abhishek Sharma and Prithvi Shaw against Ryan Hadley.

Who has the edge?
Being the final, it's anyone's game as both teams come into the contest having registered big wins in the semi-finals. India, unbeaten in the tournament, will start with a greater reputation having defeated Australia in their opening game of the tournament.

Game-breakers?
For Australia, their captain Jason Sangha, as well as their leading run-scorer Jack Edwards and all-rounder Will Sutherland. Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill and Abhishek Sharma are the key players for India.  

Match prediction?
India start favourites. They have been more consistent across all three departments in the tournament. Their bowling has been impressive with a lot of variety, while their batting has been tested and provides the depth.

Rob Key describes Shubman Gill as the best young batsman he has ever seen
Rob Key describes Shubman Gill as the best young batsman he has ever seen

IAN BISHOP, former West Indies fast bowler

Key match-ups? 
The key battle area will be Australia’s seamers – Hadley, Evans and Merlo – versus India’s two batting gems. If Australia’s seam bowlers can remove Prithvi Shaw and Shubman Gill cheaply, then they have a chance of seizing control of the game. While there is a lot of talent in the Indian batting line-up, it will be interesting to see whether any of the other batsmen can play a significant leading role rather than a contributing part. There have been a couple of wobbles in the Indian middle-order batting already this tournament. Not big collapses, but just enough to be a discussion point. 

Who has the edge?
India have played the most complete and consistent all-round cricket so far in the tournament. That’s not a revelation to anyone, so therefore they go into the final as favourites. But Australia have gotten better as the tournament has gone on. I don’t expect to see another 100-run trouncing as occurred when the team’s first met in the preliminary phase. 

Game-breakers?
India need Kamlesh Nagarkoti (seven wickets at an average of 15) and Shivam Mavi (eight wickets at 15) to be as incisive in this final as they were in the first round against Australia’s batting. Australia’s batting can be powerful, looks in better touch now and is potentially deep. India’s spinners will do their job, but they are orthodox spinners and bear in mind how well Australia handled Afghanistan’s unorthodox spinners in their semi-final. Watch out for Australia's captain Jason Sangha in this game.

Match prediction? 
I’d like to think India’s form and class will see them through but I’d be wary of Australia’s typical confidence and strength of character on this big stage.

Video
U19CWC POTD - Nagarkoti's ball to take India to the semis

Kamlesh Nagarkoti seals India's place in the final with a peach of a delivery

TOM MOODY, ex-Australia all-rounder

Key match-ups? 
Lloyd Pope, the leg-spinner, versus India's top order will be key to Australia's ability to control their opponents' total.

Who has the edge?
I feel India have the upper hand in this final given their all-round strength. Australia will need to bat out of their skins to cause an upset.

Game-breakers?
The obvious Indian names are Gill, Shaw, Nagarkoti, Mavi, [Anukul] Roy and Sharma. For Australia, Pope will need to bowl well and the Australian captain Sangha will need to lead from the front with a match-winning innings.

Match prediction?
I believe India are comfortably the favourites. They have been the most consistent team throughout the tournament and will be very hard to beat on the day.

Video
Lloyd Pope's historic 8/35 against England

Lloyd Pope took the extraordinary figures of 8/15 against England

ROB KEY, former England batsman

Key match-ups?
The battle of the two best captains in the tournament. Jason Sangha and Prithvi Shaw have impressed with their decision-making and calmness under pressure. These attributes will be vital in the final.

Who has the edge?
India have the edge as they have every base covered: batsmen in form, real pace with the new ball, as well as some very good spinners who had the wood over Australia in the first game of the group stage.

Game-breakers?
Shubman Gill is a full international-class batsman already and the best young player I’ve ever seen, which includes Sehwag, Cook and Root. Jack Edwards has the power to intimidate the Indian bowlers, as he did the Afghan spinners in the semi-final.

Match prediction?
India to win as they just have the class in all departments.

The ICC U19 CWC final takes place between India and Australia at 14.00 local time on Sunday at the Bay Oval in Tauranga, New Zealand

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