England U-19 team sealed their ticket for the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup by defeating Afghanistan in a dramatic semi-final. With this win, England also put an end to a longing wait of 24 years since 1998 on Tuesday. For the first time in 24 years, England reached the finals of the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup.
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England became the first team this season to reach the finals. They will now face the winner of the second semi-final, either India or Australia in the finals on Saturday. The second semi-final of this season will take place today from 6:30 pm.
England won the toss and chose to bat first in the overcast conditions of the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium. Afghanistan made a stronger start where they dismissed England opener, Jacob Bethell, early. Then captain Tom Prest and George Thomas started recovering from the early loss. They were great in front of Afghanistan’s medium-pacers. The duo scored 56 on the powerplay before the captain went back to the pavilion for 17 runs. 3 half-centuries from George Thomas (50), George Bell (56*), and Alex Horton (53*) led England to score 231/6 in 47 overs.
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While bowling, England’s spinner Rehan Ahmed was simply stunning. He scalped 3 wickets at the most crucial points. He destroyed the Afghanistan batting lineup when they needed only 18 runs from the last 10 balls. His 4/41 in the penultimate over was the key part of England’s victory.
It is only a matter of a few hours to know about the second team in the finals. Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, North Sound will host it on 5 February, Saturday.