Sri Lanka and South Africa progressed to the quarter-finals of the ICC Under 19 World Cup after recording contrasting victories in Dubai.
Sri Lanka overcame 1998 champion England by one wicket at Dubai International Cricket Stadium in a match of fluctuating fortunes to become the first side from Group D to progress to the knock-out stage.
South Africa recorded a comfortable 45-run victory over Canada at Abu Dhabi Oval 1 to seal a place in the next round from Group C.
In the other results of the day, the West Indies outplayed Zimbabwe by 167 runs and New Zealand outsmarted the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by 112 runs.
In one of the closest finishes in the history of the age-group competition, Sri Lanka sealed victory with one wicket and seven balls to spare. This was after Sri Lanka had looked down and out in its 231-run chase when it collapsed to 160 for seven in 35 overs and then needed nine runs for victory with one wicket remaining.
Number-seven batsman Thilaksha Sumanasiri (43) and number-nine AK Tyronne (20) put on 53 runs for the eighth wicket to take the score to 213 before Sumanasiri perished with Sri Lanka still requiring 18 runs off 35 balls.
Tyronne followed Sumanasiri nine runs later to leave his side needing nine runs from 17 deliveries. But Anuk Fernando (10 not out) and Lakshan Jayasinghe (four not out) got the required runs with seven balls remaining, with a winning single coming after Jonathan Tattersall missed the wicket at the non-striker’s end.
Earlier, Sadeera Samarawickrama played some fine shots in an elegant 89-ball 82 that included 10 boundaries and put Sri Lanka on track for victory. He added 46 runs for the first wicket with Hasahn Dumindu (17), 38 runs for the fourth wicket with Priyamal Perera (22), 36 runs for fifth wicket with
Binura Fernando (19) and another 37 runs for the sixth wicket with Sumanasiri.
A gutsy 95 by Jonathan Tattersall saved England’s blushes when it slipped to 43 for four before recovering to 230 for nine. Tattersall, who was out on the penultimate delivery, faced 120 balls and hit three fours and two sixes.
The 19-year-old from Yorkshire added 71 runs for the fifth wicket with Will Rhodes (38) and 57 runs for the sixth wicket with Joe Clarke (19). It was mainly Tattersall’s efforts that saw England collect 78 runs in the last 10 overs, including 55 runs in the final five overs.
At Abu Dhabi Oval 1, Yaseen Valli became the first batsman in the tournament to score a century and take four wickets in the same match as South Africa overcame a spirited challenge from Canada to win by 45 runs.
Valli first scored an unbeaten 102 from 92 balls with 10 fours and two sixes, and featured in a 102-run fifth wicket partnership with Bradley Dial (47) as South Africa posted 293 for six after being sent into bat.
He then recorded figures of 10-1-43-4 as Canada was restricted to 248 for eight. Valli is now the leading run-getter in the tournament with 155 runs and most successful bowler with six wickets.
For Canada Sudeepta Aurka finished as the top scorer with a fine 69, while Nitish Kumar contributed 53. The two batsmen added 101 runs for the second wicket after Aurka had put on 51 runs for the opening wicket with Yug Rao (23). Nikhil Dutta was the other main run-getter for Canada with 35.
At the Zayed Cricket Stadium, opener Tagenarine Chanderpaul remained unbeaten on 84 as the West Indies collected 275 for six after electing to bat first against Zimbabwe.
Chanderpaul, who featured in two half-century partnerships, faced 135 balls and hit six fours. For the first wicket, he added 69 runs with Shimron Hetmyer (49) and he put on 74 runs with Jonathan Drakes whose contribution was 50 off 54 balls with six fours.
Zimbabwe, in its turn, was sent packing for 108 in less than 40 overs, with Kieran Geyle top-scoring with 45 not out. Wickets were shared between Preston McSween (three for 14) and Ray Jordan (three for 32).
Robert O’Donnell scored a century for New Zealand which faced no problems in disposing off the UAE by 112 runs at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium. O’Donnell scored an undefeated 107 from 117 balls with six fours and four sixes to propel his side to 281 for five.
Jack Hunter (three for 32), Jeremy Benton (two for 16), Jeremy Benton 2-16 and Dane Watson (two for 36) shared wickets as the home side was bowled out for 169 in 49.4 overs.
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