Rishabh Pant’s 24-ball-78 Helps India Enter U19 WC Q/F Unbeaten
Rishabh Pant hit the fastest ever half-century in Under-19 history.
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Nepal: 169/8 in 48 overs (Sandeep Sunar 37, Avesh Khan 3/34, Washington Sundar 2/20, Mayank Dagar 2/32) lost to
India: 175/3 in 18.1 overs (Rishabh Pant 78, Ishan Kishan 52, Sarfaraz Khan 21 no)
by 7 wickets.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant smashed his way into the record books with a 24-ball 78 as India colts beat Nepal by 7 wickets to top Group D after finishing unbeaten in three matches.
India will either meet Bangladesh or Namibia in the quarter-final of the tournament.
Left-hander Pant, who is in the IPL wishlist of many franchises in the upcoming auction on February 6, hit nine fours and five sixes during his fastest 50 in the U-19 World Cup history as India cruised to the victory target of 170 in only 18.1 overs. His 50 came off 18 balls.
Nepal, who have been the surprise package of the tournament, were blown away as Rishabh and skipper Ishan Kishan (52)-- both Ranji Trophy players -- added 124 runs in 9 overs giving the 1500 odd people some breathtaking shots to savour.
Earlier, Indian bowlers, led by Avesh Khan (3/34), restricted the Himalayan nation to 169 for 8 in a match that was reduced to 48 overs. Washington Sundar and Mayank Dagar also got a couple of wickets each.
A compulsive puller, Pant teed off by hitting seamer Aarif Sheikh to the cow corner for a couple of sixes.
A strong player on the on-side, the lad from Roorkee, who has honed his skills at Delhi’s famous Sonnet Club, lofted Dipendra Airee over deep mid-wicket region for three huge sixes.
He could have walked away with a hundred had he not tried an expansive inside out shot of Prem Tamang only to be bowled.
When asked if he was in a hurry, the stocky and cocky Pant replied: “I was not in a hurry. I was just playing my normal game. Rahul sir told me to stick to the basics.” Pant is being hailed in the Indian cricketing circle as the ‘Next Big Thing’ with at least four franchises going to bid hard for the boy, whose base price is just Rs 10 lakh.
Delhi Daredevils, Kolkata Knight Riders and Mumbai Indians, all want him in the team.
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Topics: IPL AUCTION Rahul Dravid Indian Under 19
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