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Bangladesh U19 stuns defending champion South Africa U19

Host Bangladesh gave the ICC U19
Cricket World Cup 2016 a momentous start with a 43-run victory over defending
champion South Africa in Wednesday’s opening Group A match.

In a Group C fixture at the MA Aziz Stadium in Chittagong, Dan Lawrence and
Jack Burnham hit centuries as title contender England brushed aside Fiji by 299
runs.

 

Bangladesh, which
elected to bat on a slow pitch at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in
Chittagong, lost wickets just when the batsmen appeared to have settled down
and was restricted to 240 for seven in its 50 overs.

Nazmul Hossain hit 73 off 82 balls to boost the total after useful
contributions from Pinak Ghosh (43) and Joyraz Sheik (46).

The target proved too tough for South Africa, which was bowled out for 197 in
the penultimate over despite a defiant 100 from opener Liam Smith.

 

Smith batted till the
45th over before being
the seventh batsman out, caught superbly in the cover by Bangladesh captain
Mehidy Hasan.

Mehidy, leading his nation in the second successive ICC U19 Cricket World Cup,
picked up three for 37 with his off-spin. Seamer Mohammad Saifuddin took three
for 30.

It was Bangladesh’s first win over South Africa in the ICC U19 World Cup
following four previous defeats, but Wednesday’s victory was its 12th in 15 matches against the same
opponents over the past two years.

With Scotland and Namibia the other sides in the group home team’s victory
makes it the favorite to secure top place from Group A and avoid a possible
quarter-final clash against Rahul Dravid-coached India.

 

Nazmul Hossain, who was named man
of the match, said the slow wicket made their total a challenging target.

“The ball was not coming on to the bat, so we thought it was a good total,”
said Nazmul. “I just wanted to bat as long as possible and hold one end up. But
I was still a bit disappointed that we could not get another 20-odd runs.” Nazmul insisted his team will not relax after beating
South Africa.

 

“We can’t afford to relax or lose
focus,” he said. “We have just put one game away but we must concentrate on the
next match and then the next. In a tournament like this there is no room for
comfort.”

South African captain Tony de Zorzi said Smith’s century was a great positive
to come out from what was a disappointing defeat for his side. “I think Smith played superbly,” said de Zorzi. “240
was certainly not a bad total to be chasing but we did not have wickets in
hand. We lost the game in the second half. Hopefully we will do better in the
next match.”

 

In their next matches in Cox’s
Bazar on
Sunday
, Bangladesh will take on Scotland while South
Africa will face Namibia.

 

Meanwhile, England
piled up 371 for three in its 50 overs against Fiji, with Essex’s Lawrence
smashing 174 off 150 balls with 25 boundaries and a six, and Burnham of Durham
making 148 off 137 balls with 19 fours and four sixes.

The pair put on 303 for the second wicket after opener Max Holden had been
dismissed in the third over.

 

England,
whose squad includes nine players with experience of senior county cricket back
home, bowled Fiji out for 72 in only 27.3 overs. 

 

Peni
Vuniwaqa was the lone batsman to offer any resistance with 36 as four batsmen
failed to score and five others did not reach double figures.

 

Lancashire seamer Saqib
Mahmood grabbed three wickets for two runs in his five overs and his new-ball
partner Sam Curran of Surrey took three for 22.

England next plays the West Indies on Friday and Fiji takes on Zimbabwe the same
day.

The 11th edition of
the biennial 16-nation tournament features nine Test-playing nations and seven
Associate and Affiliate Members – Afghanistan, Canada, Fiji, Namibia, Nepal,
Ireland and Scotland.

Teams have been divided into four groups with the top two in each advancing to
the Super League quarter-finals and the other two qualifying for the Plate
championships.

Scores in brief:

Group A – Bangladesh beat
South Africa by 43 runs in Chittagong
Bangladesh 240-7, 50 overs (Nazmul Hossin 73, Joyraz Sheik 46, Pinak Ghosh 43;
Wiaan Mulder 3-42)
South Africa 197 all out, 48.4 overs (Liam Smith 100; Mohammad Saifuddin 3-30,
Mehidy Hasan 3-37)

 

Group C – England beat Fiji by
299 runs in Chittagong
England 371-3, 50 overs (Dan Lawrence 174, Jack Burnham 148)
Fiji 72 all out, 27.3 overs (Peni Vuniwaqa 36; Saqib Mahmood 3-2, Sam Curran
3-22)

Thursday’s matches:
Group D – India v Ireland,
Mirpur
Group D – New Zealand v
Nepal, Fatullah
Group B – Pakistan v
Afghanistan, Sylhet
Group B – Sri Lanka v
Canada, Sylhet

 

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