Benoni, Feb 10 (UNI) India and Australia are set to face each other in the showpiece final of the ICC Under-19 Men's Cricket World Cup 2024, a repeat of the finals of last year's ICC World Test Championship and the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023. Is repetition.
Both teams, so far undefeated in the tournament, will have the opportunity to add to their cricketing history in Benoni on Sunday.
In the last 12 months, Australia has won three major ICC trophies, including the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2023 in addition to the above titles. Tomorrow's game will be an opportunity to add another silverware to their cabinet.
India, on the other hand, have won the U19 Men's Cricket World Cup on five previous occasions, and a record sixth title is at stake. If they are successful in winning, it will be their first successful title defense.
The teams have met twice before in the U19 Men's Cricket World Cup final and India emerged victorious on both occasions (2012 and 2018).
India dominated their group and Super Six fixtures with impressive wins over Bangladesh, Ireland and the United States, helping them clinch pole position in Group A.
In the group stage, Musheer Khan and Uday Saharan performed brilliantly with the bat, while Naman Tiwari and Soumya Pandey continued to perform brilliantly with the ball.
Continuing their golden run in the Super Sixes, India were comfortable winners against New Zealand and Nepal. Saharan, Musheer and Sachin Dhas made significant contributions to Willow.
After topping Group 1 of the Super Six, India faced hosts South Africa in the semi-finals. The knockout competition was a tough test with significant threats from Kwena Mfaka and Tristan Luus, but Saharan and Dhaas took India to the final.
A team full of confidence when setting targets for their opponents (each of their first five wins were secured in similar fashion), India's win against South Africa showed that they are capable of chasing down targets when required. Were also ready to achieve mastery.
For Hugh Wiebgen's Australia, different players have stood out at different stages of the tournament. Wiebgen, Callum Vidler, Harry Dixon, Harkirat Bajwa and Ryan Hicks came to the fore during the group stage, where the team showed varying levels of dominance in wins over Namibia, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka.
In the Super Six stage, Wiebgen's sensational century against rivals England laid the foundation for a dominant win in Kimberley. Sam Konstas contributed in the next game against the West Indies by scoring a century, which helped Australia post a competitive score.
However, the match had to be abandoned due to continuous rain. On the basis of this undefeated performance, Australia reached the semi-finals as the top player of Group 2.
In the semi-final against Pakistan, Australia's batting once again faltered after Tom Straker's six-wicket haul had put them on top. Digging deep, they managed to get a wicket in the final over of the game.
Like India, Australia have won confidently batting first but have had to struggle in the chase.
Callum Vidler has been Australia's best bowler with the new ball, his impeccable line and length troubling the opposition's top order batsmen.
Arshin Kulkarni, on the other hand, has struggled particularly against early seam movement. Three of his dismissals in the tournament have come past the wicketkeeper or the slip cordon.
Given Vidler's skill with the new ball, the Australian will be a major threat to the Indian opener.
With 116 and 96 runs in his last two matches, Sachin Dhaas has been in premium form. His backfoot skills make him a key batsman against Australia's strong bowling unit, who are known for their pace and bounce.
However, the change of pace hasn't worked out well for Dhas at all in this tournament, with him struggling with his timing against slower balls. The striker is clever in his pace variations and the seamer is coming into fresh form after taking six wickets in the last game and can trouble the batsmen.
Wiebgen, the pillar of Australia's middle-order, was demolished by left-arm spinners in three of the six innings of the tournament against Zimbabwe's Ryan Simbi, England's Theo Willey and Sri Lanka's Vishwa Lahiru.
Soumya has been the best left-arm spinner in the tournament and had captained Australia in the warm-up matches before the tournament. The prospect of facing him in the final will be daunting for Wiebgen.
India: Adarsh Singh, Arshin Kulkarni, Musheer Khan, Uday Saharan (captain), Priyanshu Molia, Sachin Dhas, Aravelly Avanish (wk), Murugan Abhishek, Naman Tiwary, Raj Limbani, Saumya Pandey.
Australia: Harry Dixon, Sam Konstas, Hugh Webben (c), Harjas Singh, Ryan Hicks (wk), Ollie Peake, Tom Campbell, Rafe McMillan, Tom Straker, Mahali Beardman, Callum Vidler.
UNI BDN CS2008