India favourite to reclaim Under-19 Asia Cup title

Defending champion India and Sri Lanka will contest the final for the Under-19 Asia Cup title on Friday.

India's Himanshu Rana leads the run charts in the Under-19 Asia Cup.   -  PTI

Defending champion India and Sri Lanka are one step away from clinching the Under-19 Asia Cup trophy; the teams will play the final at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Friday.

India has been unbeaten in the eight-team event so far, having beaten Sri Lanka, Nepal and Malaysia in the group stages, and Afghanistan in the semifinal. It has been the most dominant team in the tournament so far, with all victories comprehensively got. Middle-order batsman Himanshu Rana, who scored a century in the semifinal against Afghanistan, leads the run charts with 212 runs in four matches, while, Shubhman Gill, is close behind him, with 182 runs. Off-spinner Yash Thakur and leg-break googly bowler Rahul Chahar, who took five wickets against Nepal, have also been significant in India’s campaign.

Sri Lanka’s only defeat in the tournament arrived in its group game against India, to which it lost by six wickets. It was close to another defeat, against Nepal, which fell short of Sri Lanka’s total of 227 by one run in the final over; Nepal lost its last wicket with three balls to go. Vishwa Chathuranga, the opening batsman, has been prolific for the team upfront, with 180 runs.

Pakistan, the finalist in the 2014 edition of the event, did not progress to the semifinals this time. It lost to Afghanistan by 21 runs in the group stages.