Kuala Lumpur, Feb 25 (UNI) Giving an all round display, defending champion Pakistan thrashed Australia by six wickets while New Zealand stunned Sri Lanka by 80 runs to complete the semi-final line up in the U/19 Cricket World Cup here today.
New Zealand will face India in the first semi-final on Wednesday while Pakistan will face South Africa in the second semi on Friday.
Put into bat, Australian batsmen put up a poor show and were bundled out for paltry 129 runs in 47.1 overs and Pakistan reached the target without much ado, scoring, 130 for 4 in 37.5 overs.
Having won the toss and choosing to field, captain Imad Wasim's men took no time to get into their stride with Adil Raza immediately making a double strike, removing both Australia openers with just one run on the board.
From that moment onwards, Australia never looked like winning the match as Pakistan's seam attack of Raza and Azhar Attari laid a great foundation for spinners Imad and Umer Akmal to push home the advantage.
Only James Pattinson (34 not out) looked comfortable in what were conditions more suited to the slower, lower wickets of Pakistan than the bouncier, flatter tracks of Australia.
In the end, the team was all out for 129, significantly short of where captain Michael Hill would have wanted, especially given that he said afterwards he would have batted anyway had he won the toss.
But like most Aussie teams, this one was not in the mood to roll over just because it had been bowled out for a low score. Jeremy Smith and Josh Hazlewood took early wickets as Pakistan stuttered to 32-3 and at that stage, the Australians' tails were up. But Ahmad Shahzad (40) and, in particular, man of the match Ali Asad (63 not out) took the game to Australia's bowlers and were not afraid to play shots despite the high-pressure circumstances.
Shahzad was eventually out just before the end and Pakistan eased to victory with six wickets and 12.1 overs to spare.
New Zealand completes the line-up for the semi-finals as the junior Black Caps produced a classy performance against Sri Lanka in the other Super League game.
Batting first, New Zealand made 213 thanks most to George Worker (48), Fraser Colson (39) and captain Kane Williamson (34) as Sri Lanka bowled well to contain them. But as he has done throughout this tournament so far, New Zealand opening bowler Tim Southee put the ball in the right area and the Sri Lankan batsmen were unable to deal with him.
Southee, who has already played ODIs for the full New Zealand team, removed the top three batsmen as Sri Lanka slumped to 44-4, a position from which it never really recovered.
In the end, Sri Lanka, the host from two years ago, could not produce the goods and fell 81 runs short of victory.
Super League Quarter-Finals: Pakistan beat Australia by six wickets Australia 127, 47.1 overs (James Pattinson 34; Adil Raza 3-26, Umar Akmal 2-20, Imad Wasim 2-21, Azhar Attari 2-23) Pakistan 130 for 4,37.5 overs (Ahmad Shahzad 40, Ali Asad 63 not out; Josh Hazlewood 2-28) New Zealand beat Sri Lanka by 80 runs New Zealand 213 all out, 49.5 overs (George Worker 48, Fraser Colson 39, Kane Williamson 34; Umesh Karunarathna 3-38, Roshane Silva 3-39) Sri Lanka 133 all out, 42.1 overs (Sachith Pathirana 42; Nick Beard 3-15, Tim Southee 3-25, Anurag Verma 2-22).
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