Khan scored an invaluable 74 and Samson chipped in with a priceless 68 as the two batsmen put on 119 runs for the fifth wicket to lift India from 94 for four to 262 for seven in 50 overs. Openers Sami Aslam (64) and Imam-ul-Haq (39) then provided Pakistan a flying start of 109 runs, but the green shirts failed to maintain the momentum against some disciplined bowling, led by Deepak Hooda (five for 41), and athletic fielding to be bowled out for 222.
This was India’s third victory in eight matches over Pakistan in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup. Overall, India now leads 12-8 in 21 U19 matches to date.
In the other matches of the day, opener Shadman Islam became the first batsman of the 2014 tournament to hit a century as Bangladesh gave Afghanistan a cricket lesson when it won by 10 wickets at Abu Dhabi Oval 2, three-time former winner Australia thumped Namibia by 101 runs at Zayed Cricket Stadium and Scotland made short work of Papua New Guinea (PNG) by six wickets at ICC Academy 1.
Shadman Islam slapped 14 fours and a six in an unconquered 126 that came off 142 deliveries, while Joyraz Sheik’s 81 not out from 114 balls included 11 fours as Bangladesh achieved the 213 runs target with more than seven overs to spare. Earlier, Mosaddek Hossain took three for 19 and Rahatul Ferdous bagged two for 38 as Afghanistan collected 212 with Mohammad Mujtaba top scoring with 47.
Opener Matthew Short missed a century by four runs as Australia, winner in 1988, 2002 and 2010, had an easy sailing at Zayed Cricket Stadium where it overpowered Namibia by 101 runs.
Short hit nine fours in a 138-ball 96 and featured in an 80-run second wicket stand with Jaron Morgan (33), which was followed by a 100-run third wicket stand with Ben McDermott (45) as Australia scored 242 for seven after electing to bat first. In turn, Namibia was bowled out for 141 as Matthew Fotia and James Bazley equally shared six wickets between them conceding 23 and 25 runs, respectively.
The only positive for Namibia from an otherwise disappointing day was an all-round performance by Bredell Wessells. With his medium-fast bowling, Wessells returned figures of four for 40 and then contributed 43 runs with the bat that included five fours and a six.
Short later said: “It’s a bit disappointing not going all the way to a century, but the boys batted pretty well. One of the aims of today was to bat well throughout the middle overs and we had a few good partnerships through the middle.”
In the feature match of the day, India twice bounced back to turn the tables on Pakistan in front of a small but jubilant crowd at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
After electing to bat first, India openers Akhil Herwadkar (41) and Ankush Bains (24) took full advantage of Pakistan’s wayward bowling to race to 65-0 in eight overs, before Irfanullah Shah (two for 32) provided the initial breakthrough that resulted in three more wickets as India slipped to 94 for four.
However, at that stage, Sarfaraz Khan and Sanju Samson got involved in a rescue mission. Sarfaraz, who took 16 balls to get off the mark and was also dropped by Sami in the slip, later turned aggressive and scored most of his runs through sweep shots. He brought up his half-century with a six and eventually fell to Zafar Gohar at the score of 213 but not before he had scored 74 from 78 balls that also included five fours and a six.
Samson followed Sarfaraz 16 runs later after scoring a well-constructed 68 that came off 101 balls and included two fours and a six.
Pakistan, which conceded 96 runs through boundaries, needed a solid start to stay in pursuit of a 263 runs target hunt which it got through Sami Aslam and Imam-ul-Haq when the two put on 109 runs in just over 23 overs. However, at that stage Imam ran out of patience and was caught at the long-off and a few balls later Sami was run-out.
Pakistan never recovered from the dismissal of the two settled batsmen as not only the runs dried up, but the wickets continued to fall from both ends. Pakistan’s resistance finally came to an end in the 49th over when it was bowled out for 222.
For India, Baroda’s 18-year-old off-spinner Deepak Hooda was the most impressive bowler when he recorded figures of 10-0-41-5.
Man of the match Sarfaraz Khan, commenting on his performance, said: “I had a quiet start as Pakistan was bowling well on a wicket which had something for the bowlers. But then I relied on my favourite sweep shot and I’m glad it worked today.
“Our other matches in this group as are against Scotland and PNG, so I’m happy that I’ve been able to put up a good performance against Pakistan.”
Sami Aslam admitted his side was below par. “We didn’t bowl well in the first spell and the batting was equally below-par. But this is a long tournament and I’m sure come the knock-out matches, we’ll be in a good shape.”
Scores in brief:
In Pool A, India beat Pakistan by 40 runs at Dubai International Cricket Stadium
India 262-7, 50 overs (Sarfaraz Khan 74, Sanju Samson 68, Akhil Herwadkar 41, Ankush Bains 24, Deepak Hooda 22 not out; Irfanullah Shah 2-32, Karamat Ali 2-37)
Pakistan 222 all out, 48.4 overs (Sami Aslam 64, Imam-ul-Haq 39, Saud Shakeel 32, Zia-ul-Haq 21; Deepak Hooda 5-41)
Man of the match – Sarfaraz Khan (India)
In Pool A, Scotland beat Papua New Guinea (PNG) by six wickets at ICC Academy 1
PNG 108 all out, 36.3 overs (Ross McLean 3-15, Chayank Gosain 3-17, Mark Watt 2-23)
Scotland 110-4, 29.4 overs (Zander Muir 39 not out, Nick Farrar 26; Alei Nao 2-28, Kabua Morea 2-30)
Man of the match – Zander Muir (Scotland)
In Pool B, Bangladesh beat Afghanistan by 10 wickets at Abu Dhabi Oval 2
Afghanistan 212 all out, 50 overs (Mohammad Mujtaba 47, Hashmatullah Shaidi 43, Nasir Ahmadzai 41; Mosaddek Hossain 3-19, Rahatul Ferdous 2-38)
Bangladesh 216-0, 42.3 overs (Shadman Islam 126 not out; Joyraz Sheik 81 not out)
Man of the match – Shadman Islam (Bangladesh)
In Pool B, Australia beat Namibia by 101 runs at Zayed Cricket Stadium
Australia 242-7, 50 overs (Matthew Short 96, Ben McDermott 45, Jaron Morgan 33, Alex Gregory 25, Jake Doran 20; Bredell Wessells 4-50, JJ Smit 3-55)
Namibia 141 all out, 44.2 overs (Bredell Wessells 43, Jaen Kotze 23, Gerhard Erasmus 21, Matthew Fotia 3-23, James Bazley 3-25)