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U19 CWC 2024 Day 9 Round-up: South Africa, Pakistan batters put on a show; Zimbabwe qualify with impressive win
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The ICC U19 Men's Cricket World Cup 2024 witnessed a day of big-hitting with Steve Stolk’s 34-run over in Potchefstroom and Shahzaib Khan’s classy hits in East London stealing the limelight.
Stolk smashed a record 13-ball fifty in an innings studded with eight sixes and his teammate Dewan Marais added three more during his unbeaten half-century as the Proteas chased down Scotland's target of 270 in 27 overs.
Meanwhile, Shahzaib and Shamyl Hussain powered Pakistan to a 10-wicket win with an unbeaten century opening partnership after the bowlers had reduced New Zealand to an ordinary total.
In the Super Six decider clash in Kimberley, Newman Nyamhuri’s four-wicket haul led Zimbabwe to an easy win over Namibia.
*South Africa beat Scotland by seven wickets in Potchefstroom *
Scotland 269/9 (50 overs) v South Africa 273/3 (27 overs)
At JB Marks Oval, Jamie Dunk and Owen Gould produced two outstanding knocks to give Scotland a strong total against hosts, South Africa.
Opting to bowl, South Africa were disciplined with the ball but failed to strike with the new ball as the Scotland openers adopted a watchful approach.
Adi Hegde eventually fell to Riley Norton, but Dunk stepped up with his stroke-making to quicken the scoring rate. Alec Price fell for 18, but Dunk found the support he needed from Gould.
The two put on a century stand to drive Scotland to a dominant position. The scoring rate they went at put pressure on South Africa as they failed to produce the breakthrough. Dunk had scored into the nineties when Norton returned to clean up the Scotland opener with one that nipped back.
Uzair Ahmed walked in and belted successive sixes and a four in the next over to ease the nerves in the Scotland camp. But his eight-ball 23 cameo ended when Norton had him caught in the deep.
Gould went for his shots to race to 97 but was eventually dismissed in the final over by Kwena Maphaka before he could reach the three-figure mark. Scotland finished with 269, a total that would have had South Africa biting their nails at the innings break.
But any tension was soon eased when Steve Stolk went into carnage mode. The South African opener was merciless in his onslaught, beginning his innings with three fours in the opening over off Qasim Khan.
He went on to bludgeon Qasim for five sixes and a four in his next over to raise a stunning 13-ball half-century in just the third over of the game.
Scotland struggled to pull things back despite bowling changes as Stolk smashed everything that came his way. Gould was hit for two sixes and a four in the seventh over and by the time Nikhil Koteeshwaran broke the opening stand with the wicket of Lhuan-dre Pretorius, Stolk was already in the seventies and the team total on 114.
Koteeshwaran’s medium pace made another vital breakthrough the next over, when Stolk missed a stroke to the leg-side to be trapped in front for a 37-ball 86, one of the best knocks of the tournament so far.
Hegde had Tristan Luus stumped for 14 as Scotland sensed a comeback in the contest. Despite the required run-rate becoming almost irrelevant after Stolk’s breathtaking assault, Scotland had South Africa three down with more than 100 runs still required.
But any hope of Scotland returning to get a grip on the game was thwarted by Dewan Marais going gung-ho to counter the Scotland bowlers. The in-form batter, moved up to No.5 after two impressive hits, teamed up with David Teeger in a century stand that came off less than 80 balls.
Marais brought up his half-century off 40 balls and then in the next 10 balls raced to 80. Teeger finished unbeaten on 43 off 38 balls and South Africa had aced the run-chase in merely 27 overs, going at over 10 runs an over.
South Africa finished top of the group with the win and, alongside West Indies and England, made it to the Super Six phase from Group B.
Steve Stolk was modest about his exceptional knock and acknowledged that it was an amazing team effort.
“I just kept on hitting it. Lhuan-dre [Pretorius] kept pushing me to keep going. He keeps me pumped up. Getting to a fifty in 13 balls was quite unreal, it was special. The whole team came together this game. It was a great team effort.”
Pakistan beat New Zealand by 10 wickets in East London
*New Zealand 140 (38 overs) v Pakistan 144/0 (25.2 overs) *
Pakistan's bowlers sizzled in East London, led by Ubaid Shah's stirring new-ball spell.
After opting to bat, New Zealand had their top three batters sent back by the fiery Ubaid Shah, brother of Pakistan senior team star Naseem.
Ubaid cleaned up Luke Watson for a duck in the third over and then had Tom Jones inside-edging a delivery that seamed in substantially to the wicketkeeper.
In the same over, Snehith Reddy’s middle stump was knocked over by a peach that seamed in to pierce the gap between his bat and pad.
Oliver Tewatiya and Oscar Jackson rebuilt for New Zealand but Mohammad Zeeshan broke the stand with the wicket of the skipper. But Lachlan Stackpole counterattacked from his end to bring New Zealand back into the contest.
Tewatiya continued his defensive approach even as Stackpole went all guns blazing, with the partnership growing in stature. Naveed Khan broke the stand, however, when he had Stackpole send one straight to the cover fielder.
Naveed went on to dismiss Tewatiya stumped next over, and New Zealand were soon in a rut again. The tail perished as Arafat Minhas came in with his left-arm spin. From 117/4, New Zealand were bowled out for 140 as Pakistan completed a strong bowling performance.
In reply, Shahzaib Khan and Shamyl Hussain gave New Zealand no hope as they made 54 in the first Powerplay. The two left-handers completed a century stand in the 19th over and then smashed their way to the target within 26 overs.
Shamyl remained unbeaten on 54 off 66 balls while Shahzaib, who won the Player of the Match for the second time in the tournament, made an unbeaten 80 off 86 balls.
With the win, Pakistan finish the group stage unbeaten and head into the Super Six full of confidence. New Zealand and Nepal are the other teams to qualify from Group D with Afghanistan, who lost to Nepal in a thriller last night, missing out.
Pakistan skipper Saad Baig praised Ubaid and the openers for their impact on the game.
“The way Ubaid and the others bowlers bowled was brilliant to watch. I believe in our bowlers and their strengths. It was great to see the openers bat so well. Shahzaib batted with great intensity.”
Zimbabwe beat Namibia by 8 wickets in Kimberley
*Namibia 146/8 (50 overs) v Zimbabwe 147/2 (35.3 overs) *
Zimbabwe beat Namibia in Kimberley on the back of a good all-round performance. The win ensured their place ahead of Namibia in the Super Six stage of the U19 Men’s CWC.
Zimbabwe’s bowlers stepped up in the big game after they opted to bowl. Kohl Eksteen struck early on with the wicket of Johannes de Villiers, but Namibia made a cautious start to deny further wickets in the Powerplay.
Left-arm quick Newman Nyamhuri dented Namibia with two strikes in quick succession as they slipped to 49/3 with the run-rate under three runs per over.
Skipper Alexander Volschenk tried to up the ante but Nyamhuri struck at the other end with the big wicket of Zacheo van Vuuren. Left-arm spinner Ryan Simbi’s second spell proved to be too hot for the Namibian batters.
Simbi trapped Ben Brassell in front and then cleaned up Volschenk to put Zimbabwe right on top. He added a third in his ninth over as Namibia lost their seventh with the score still in double digits.
Hanro Badenhorst played a watchful hand from No.10, making a 76-ball unbeaten 39 with support from the tailenders as Namibia ground their way to 146 in 50 overs.
Zimbabwe needed a win to qualify, and Panashe Taruvinga did not take any risks on a surface that had thrown up some low-scoring games in the tournament.
Despite losing his opening partner Ryan Kamwemba early, Taruvinga’s cautious approach ensured that there was no slip-up. Brendon Sunguro offered solid company from the other end and the duo made a century stand to all but win the game for Zimbabwe.
Sunguro fell soon after for 29 but Taruvinga remained unbeaten on 49 as Zimbabwe completed the win with 17 overs and eight wickets to spare.
They will head to the Super Six stage with Australia and Sri Lanka from Group C.
Newman Nyamhuri, whose four-wicket haul won him the Player of the Match award, was chuffed about his bowling.
“I think the surface was really soft and I was using that to my advantage. I was hitting the deck hard and trying to impart more pace to my bowling. The coach asked me to use my pace to my advantage and I did it.”