The towering Zeeshan had claimed six wickets against Nepal and continued his excellent form with a four-for against India. Introduced second-change after Amir Hassan removed opener Arshin Kulkarni for a run-a-ball 24, he didn’t take long to strike, nicking off No.3 Rudra Mayur Patel for a single, and celebrating furiously.
Adarsh Singh and captain Uday Sharan each made half-centuries to help India rebuild, and they reached the 30-over mark well placed at 128-2 before two wickets in two overs pegged them back. Arafat Minhas nicked off Adarsh, while Zeeshan added his second wicket, of Musheer Khan. India lost wickets regularly thereafter as they looked to attack, with all-rounder Sachin Dhas adding 52, and they finished on 259-9.
India struck early in reply, Murugan Abhishek dismissing Shamyl Hussain in the fifth over, but Pakistan rebuilt through a century second-wicket stand. Abhishek returned to winkle out Shahzaib Khan, who made 63, but that was India’s last taste of success.
Key to the Pakistan chase was No.3 Azan Awais, who contributed an unbeaten 105 off 130. Captain Saad Baig provided the impetus, making 68 off 51 as Pakistan eased home with eight wickets to spare.
Both sides are well placed to make the semi-finals. Pakistan play Afghanistan in their final group game, and a win will ensure top spot. India play Nepal, who have been beaten by Pakistan and Afghanistan.
If India and Afghanistan both win, progression would come down to a three-way net run rate tiebreak also including Pakistan. Pakistan’s net run rate of +1.563 is significantly better at this stage, with India (+0.454) in second and Afghanistan (+0.219).
Those fixtures will be played on Tuesday, December 12. In the other group, after one game, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are first and second having won their opening games. UAE and Japan are the other two teams in the group.
Watch the India-Pakistan U19 Asia Cup highlights below:
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