Junior Tigers have beaten Sri Lanka by three wickets in a thrilling last-over contest to earn third place in the Under-19 World Cup.Skipper Mehedi Hasan Miraz led from the front with a sparkling all-round performance to help his country register its best result in a world event.Charith Asalanka (76) hit a gritty half-century before the hosts bowled out Sri Lanka for a modest 214 in 48.5 overs after they had elected to bat at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium in Fatullah on Saturday.Having taken three wickets with the ball, skipper Mehedi Hasan Miraz (53) fashioned an 88-run stand with Nazmul Hasan Shanto (40) as Bangladesh paced their chase well at the start.But Sri Lankan bowlers fought back late to bring the equation down to 27 off 18 balls before Jaker Ali (31 not out) guided his team to the win with three balls to spare.Bangladesh, who left out regular openers Pinak Ghosh and Saif Hassan, sent Joyraz Sheik and Zakir Hasan to open the innings.They stumbled in the first over, losing Zakir for a duck. Joyraz and Jaker steadied the chase by putting 48 on the scoreboard before the latter went off the field suffering a cramp on his calf muscle.
Joyraz soon headed back after sending a low full toss straight to midwicket off Wanindu Masaranga as Miraz walked in. He was dropped on 6.As Sri Lanka dried up the boundaries, Miraz looked to go over midwicket. Lahiru Kumara ran in from the deep but spilled a regulation catch.The duo regained momentum with singles, twos and threes to take their team close to the 150-run mark. Miraz reached his fourth successive half-century off 63 balls with two boundaries and a six.Both the batsmen then fell in quick succession to run outs that reignited Sri Lanka’s hopes.Sri Lanka dried up the runs as new batsmen Shafiul Hayet (21) and Mohammad Shaifuddin (19) struggled to break free.The islanders struck back with quick wickets of Hayet, Shaifuddin and Mosabbek Hossain (11) but Jaker returned after receiving treatment and scored the winning runs.
Earlier, openers Kamindu Mendis (26) and Salindu Ushan Pereira (34), who was picked for the first time in the tournament, gave Sri Lanka a strong base on a foggy morning. They scored 60 runs in 12 overs in the opening stand.Bangladesh introduced three pacers for the first time in the tournament. But Mehedi Hasan Rana and Shaifuddin struggled with the line and length early on.Miraz brought himself in the attack and took out the openers in successive overs. Before Sri Lanka could recover the captain spun up another wicket by dismissing Avishka Fernando (6) to reduce the islanders to 70 for 3 in the 18th over.In his first spell, Miraz took three wickets giving away just 8 runs in 6 overs that included two maidens.Sri Lanka skipper Asalanka then led the recovery. He scored 39 runs with Shamu Ashan (27) before adding 55 with Hasaranga (30) as Sri Lanka looked set for a total of around 250.After Asalanka scored his third fifty of the tournament off 79 balls, Sri Lanka lost three wickets in the space of five balls, including a double-strike by Shaifuddin.Reeling on 187 for 8, Asalanka took his team past 200 before Abdul Halim claimed the remaining two wickets in the penultimate over.
source:greenwatch online desk