India U19 3/192 (45.4 overs) defeated Australia U19 6/191 (50 overs) by 7 wickets
Australia’s hopes for an U19 International Series finals berth have been dealt a blow following their seven wicket loss to India at Marrara Oval in Darwin today.
Australia still sits second on the Series points table, ahead of third-placed New Zealand due to a superior run rate. New Zealand have an opportunity to overtake Australia on Wednesday when they play India at Marrara Oval in the last round match of the Series.
It was always going to be a difficult task for the Aussies. India have coasted through the tournament unbeaten and seemed untroubled in the hot Darwin conditions.
Australia’s openers Matthew Short (34) and Tom Leaver (23) got off to a cautious start after being sent in to bat. India’s bowlers, led by Aamir Gani (3/25), bowled tight spells and capitalised on Australia’s wariness of losing wickets early and in a cluster.
Lower-order cameos from Jake Doran (41 off 52 balls) and Cam Valente (28 from 25 balls) boosted the total, but Australia’s earlier struggle to get the ball past the infield limited their ability to post a defendable target.
In reply, India won without too much fuss, beating Australia by seven wickets and with four overs to spare. Akhil Herwadkar (60) and captain Vijay Zol (64) were the chief destroyers, while Matt Fotia (2/34) and Short (1/10) were the wicket-takers for Australia.
Speaking after the match, Australian coach Stuart Law said:
“We understand that we’re not quite where we want to be, but it doesn’t just happen overnight. We’ve got to keep working really hard.
“We’re a lot better than the performances that we’re actually producing, which is disappointing – not just for me, but for the players who understand we’ve been underachieving in these games.
“In these games, you’ve got to be able to score runs at a fair pace and India have got some good batters; a few boys have played in the IPL already and have that experience. We’ve got some fantastic players too and as soon as they start understanding and believing it, we should start scoring a lot more runs.
The U19 International Final will take place at Marrara Oval on Friday, 12 July. In the other match to be played on Friday, the third-placed team will take on local side NT Strike at Gardens Oval.
U19 International Series match reports, fixtures and points table can be found here
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 08 July, 2013 5:58PM AEDT