Who: India vs Australia
What: ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup final
When: Sunday, February 11, 2024, 10am (08:00 GMT)
Where: Willowmoore Park, Benoni, South Africa
India’s Under-19 team step onto the field to play the ICC World Cup final with a desire for redemption, hoping to avenge their senior counterparts’ home defeat to Australia in international cricket’s showpiece event.
Three months ago, India’s senior squad suffered a six-wicket defeat to Australia in the World Cup final on home soil in front of a crowd of 92,000. The loss was painful for fans of the Indian team, who had been unbeaten in the tournament en route to the final.
On Sunday, India’s U-19 team has the chance to rewrite history and chase a record sixth world title.
WTC23 Final 🔄 CWC23 Final 🔄 #U19WorldCup 2024 Final
It’s 🇮🇳 vs 🇦🇺 again! pic.twitter.com/s0v5Zpswh0
— ICC Cricket World Cup (@cricketworldcup) February 8, 2024
‘Indian team carries the dreams of a billion hearts’
India captain Uday Saharan, the tournament’s leading run-scorer, and his side are eager to create a legacy for the future players.
Playing in their fifth successive U-19 World Cup final, India are looking to defend the trophy they won in 2022.
“As we approach the World Cup final, we carry the dreams of a billion hearts on our shoulders,” Saharan told reporters ahead of the final. “Our journey has been a testament to our hard work, unity, and love for the game.
“In this final battle, we aim to create a legacy that inspires the next generation. It’s not just a game; it’s a chance to etch our names in history.”
Aiming for a record sixth World Cup victory, Saharan knows that Australia will pose a huge challenge for the Boys in Blue.
“Right from our first game, we have played with passion, determination, and a belief that we will get the coveted title home,” Saharan added.
“In the final, against Australia, it is going to be no different as we go one step closer to defending the title successfully.”
When the going got tough, Captain Uday Saharan got going 👏👏
For stitching a match-winning partnership with Sachin Dhas, #TeamIndia Captain receives the Player of the Match Award 🙌
— BCCI (@BCCI) February 6, 2024
‘Australian boys want to make family, friends proud’
Australia captain Hugh Weibgen said his squad has done a “terrific job” throughout the tournament and they want to finish their campaign by lifting the trophy on Sunday.
“This is an opportunity to make our coaches as well as family and friends extremely proud. They have helped and supported us along the journey,” said Weibgen.
“India have obviously also had an outstanding tournament so far and are a class team. We’re expecting they will provide a challenge for us, and we are looking forward to it.”
The Aussie U19 men won a THRILLER overnight, setting up a massive final against India on Sunday. pic.twitter.com/SFVwM9ygJ6
— Cricket Australia (@CricketAus) February 8, 2024
Both India and Australia enter the final undefeated, having topped their respective groups in both the initial stage and the Super Six stage.
India booked their spot in the final after beating hosts South Africa by two wickets in a tense matchup on Tuesday. Chasing 245 for victory, India fought back from 32-4 to seal a memorable win, thanks to a brilliant match-winning partnership between Sachin Dhas and captain Saharan.
Australia also had a dramatic route to the final as they defeated Pakistan by one wicket in the final over of Thursday’s second semifinal. Having bowled out Pakistan for a seemingly below-par total of 179, Australia stuttered in their chase before their middle and lower order formed crucial partnerships to help them edge home in a thrilling fashion.
India and Australia have met twice before in an ICC U-19 Men’s World Cup final, with India having won on both occasions – in 2012 and 2018.
Australia’s predicted lineup: Harry Dixon, Sam Konstas, Hugh Weibgen (captain), Harjas Singh, Ryan Hicks (wicketkeeper), Ollie Peake, Tom Campbell, Raf MacMillan, Tom Straker, Mahli Beardman, Callum Vidler.
India’s predicted lineup: Adarsh Singh, Arshin Kulkarni, Musheer Khan, Uday Saharan (C), Priyanshu Moliya, Sachin Dhas, Aravelly Avanish (wk), Murugan Abhishek, Naman Tiwari, Raj Limbani, Saumy Pandey.