Dubai, March 1: South Africa won their maiden ICC Under-19 World Cup defeating two-time former champions Pakistan by six wickets at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium here Saturday.
Fast bowler Corbin Bosch saved his best performance for the title match when he claimed 4-15 and wicketkeeper Clyde Fortuin collected six catches as Pakistan were bundled out for 131 in 44.3 overs after electing to bat.
South Africa captain Aiden Markram then held one end together, scoring an unbeaten 66 to guide his team home in 42.1 overs.
Markram, who faced 125 balls and hit six fours, was well assisted by Greg Oldfield, who contributed 40 in a 71-run third-wicket partnership to help the side recover after they were reduced to 28/2.
Markram was declared player of the tournament for scoring 370 runs, including two centuries and one half-century.
“It feels amazing. This is the first win for South Africa at a global ICC event so I can’t even describe how I feel right now. The boys are over the moon. It was one of those innings where it didn’t feel great but I am really glad that I could stick it out,” said a delighted Markram.
Markram felt the tournament was a great learning curve for his side.
“The team performed really well in the tournament and it has been a great experience for all of us. We’ve learned so many things and there is so much that we can take from here to help us further our careers,” said the Proteas skipper.
Pakistan captain Sami Aslam said: “Obviously, we’re disappointed because we’re a much better side than the result shows. But all credit to South Africa who outplayed us. They’re deserving champions.”
Sami defended his decision to bat first but admitted some batsmen committed mistakes.
“It wasn’t a bad decision to bat first because we saw off the difficult period. We lacked application and good shot selection at the top of the order. South Africa’s bowlers bowled very well and stuck to the plan,” he said.
Pakistan’s decision to bat first backfired when they lost half their side before the 20th over. It soon slipped to 72/7 in 29.1 overs before Zafar Gohar (22) and Amad Butt (37 not out) managed to take their side to 131.
Pakistan was rocked by quality bowling by South Africa’s pace quartet – Kagiso Rabada, Ngazibini Sigwili, Justin Dill and Bosch – who consistently bowled in the corridor of uncertainty and forced Pakistan batsmen into playing false strokes.
Sami Aslam (16), Imam-ul-Haq (12), Hasan Raza (15) and Kamran Ghulam (0) were all caught by Fortuin, who later also accounted for Saifullah Khan (1) and Karamat Ali (1).
After Rabada provided the vital breakthrough, dismissing Imam, Dill picked up Sami and Hasan before Bosch ripped the Pakistan middle-order with aggressive and accurate fast bowling.
Bosch bowled to a teasing line and length to return match figures of 7.3-2-15-4, finishing the tournament with nine wickets while Rabada ended with 14 and Dill with 12 scalps.
Brief scores: Pakistan 131 all out in 44.3 overs (Amad Butt 37 not out, Zafar Gohar 22; Corbin Bosch 4/15, Yaseen Valli 2/19, Justin Dill 2/29) lost to South Africa 134/4 in 42.1 overs (Aiden Markram 66 not out, Greg Oldfield 40; Karamat Ali 2/24).