Hosts Bangladesh gave the ICC Under-19 World Cup 2016 a momentous start with a 43-run victory over defending champions South Africa in the opening Group 'A' match, in Chittagong, on Wednesday.
Electing to bat on a slow pitch at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium, Bangladesh lost wickets just when the batsmen appeared to have settled down and were restricted to 240 for seven in their 50 overs.
Nazmul Hossain hit a fluent 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, who were 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 wicket to fall, caught superbly in the covers by Bangladesh captain Mehidy Hasan.
Mehidy, leading his nation in the second successive Under-19 World Cup, picked up three for 37 with his off-spin, while seamer Mohammad Saifuddin took three for 30.
It was Bangladesh's first win over South Africa in the Under-19 World Cup following four previous defeats, but this victory was their 12th in 15 matches against the same Proteas over the past two years.
With Scotland and Namibia the other sides in the group, Bangaldesh's victory makes it the favourite to secure top place from Group 'A' and avoid a possible quarter-final clash against Rahul Dravid-coached India.
Bangladesh will take on Scotland while South Africa will face Namibia in their next matches in Cox's Bazar on Sunday.
Meanwhile, in a Group C fixture at the M A Aziz Stadium in Chittagong, Dan Lawrence and Jack Burnham hit centuries as title contenders England crushed Fiji by a massive margin of 299 runs.
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 was dismissed in the third over.
England, whose squad includes nine players with experience of senior county cricket back home, bowled Fiji out for a paltry 72 in 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 took three for 22.
England take on the West Indies in their next match on Friday while Fiji clash against Zimbabwe on the same day.
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)
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