India salvaged some pride by comfortably beating Sri Lanka by 76 runs in the fifth place semi-final play-off at the ICC Under-19 World Cup, at the ICC Cricket Academy ground in Dubai, on Monday.
In the absence of skipper Vijay Zol, who was banned for breaching the ICC's Code of Conduct, the Sanju Samson-led side piled up 291 for seven in the stipulated 50 overs and then dismissed Sri Lanka for 215 in 48.1 overs.
Deepak Hooda starred with an all-round performance, scoring an unbeaten 76 off 57 balls and then taking three wickets for 31 runs in 10 overs with his off-breaks.
Shreyash Iyer (59) and Samson (40) also made useful contributions.
Hooda, whose poor penultimate over tilted the semi-final in England's favour, hit seven boundaries and four huge sixes.
He added 81 runs in only 8.5 overs with Kuldeep Yadav (19 not out) while holding one end up.
Earlier, Akhil Herwadkar (23) and Ankush Bains (29) added 57 runs for the opening stand, while Iyer and Samson added 87 runs for the third wicket.
Sri Lanka were never in the game. Only opener Sadeera Samarawickrama (58) and Priyamal Perera (47) made notable contributions, as Hooda and left-arm orthodox Karan Kalia (2-39 in 10 overs) snared five wickets between them for only 70 runs in 20 overs.
Left-arm chinaman Kuldeep Yadav was expensive, but, in the end, got a couple of wickets.
India U-19: 291-7 in 50 overs (Deepak Hooda 76 not out, Shreyash Iyer 59 not out).
Sri Lanka U-19: 215 in 48.1 overs (Sadeera Samarawickrama 58, Deepak Hooda 3-31).
India U-19 won by 76 runs.
Image: Deepak Hooda
Photograph: IDI via Getty Images