Dubai - Aiden Markram has led his team from the front virtually from the first
match to the last as the South Africa under-19 squad beat Pakistan by a
convincing six wickets with 47 balls to spare in the ICC Junior World
Cup Final in Dubai on Saturday.
It was South Africa's first
victory in this tournament and was the third time they had reached the
final, having previously achieved that distinction in 2002 under Hashim
Amla and in 2008 under Wayne Parnell.
After losing the toss, the
Baby Proteas did a brilliant job in bowling Pakistan out for 131 in only
44.3 overs thanks to an all-round effort from their quartet of seam
bowlers, Markram took charge of the runs chase to finish unbeaten on 66
(125 balls, 6 fours) as the Proteas got across the line after 42.1
Markram has played successive innings at the tournament of
3, 31, 120 not out, 105 not out, 45 (in the semi-final against
Australia) and 66 not out (in the Final) for an aggregate of 370 runs at
an average of 123.
The key partnership was that for the third
wicket between Markram and Greg Oldfield of 71 in 21 overs after the
first two wickets had fallen cheaply.
Corbin Bosch, son of
Tertius Bosch, who represented the Proteas at their first World Cup in
1992 and also in their first Test match after unity against the West
Indies, had the best bowling return of 4/15 while Clyde Fortuin took six
catches behind the stumps.
Kagiso Rabada, who made the initial
breakthrough, finished with 14 wickets in the tournament to be the joint
second leading wicket-taker.
Fortuin had 20 dismissals (19 catches and a stumping) in the tournament which was twice the number of anybody else.
feels amazing," said Markram, who was named player of the tournament.
"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.
team has performed really well in the tournament, and it has been a
great experience for all of us. We've learned so many things from this
tournament, and there is so much that we can take from here to help us
further our careers."
Cricket South Africa (CSA) sent the team a message of congratulations on their victory.
the U-19 World Cup for the first time is a wonderful day for South
African cricket to celebrate," said CSA Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat.
"Without exception we are all very impressed by the manner in which our U-19 team won this world cup.
way they dominated today's Final from the very first ball and being the
only team unbeaten throughout the tournament showed all the hallmarks
of a championship team.
"I would like to extend warm
congratulations from the CSA Family and indeed from the whole nation to
coach Ray Jennings, captain Aiden Markram and all the other players and
members of the squad for this inspiring achievement.
"There are a
lot of other people who need to be thanked for assisting in the
selection and preparation of the side. It is rewarding to see our
development structures producing a winning team and such good players.
have the best team in the world at Test and under-19 level is worth
celebrating. As South Africans we can all be justifiably proud."