Raj Limbani of India celebrates a wicket during the ACC Men's U19 Asia Cup 2023 Group A match against Nepal held at the ICC Academy Ground, Dubai on Tuesday. Image Credit: Courtesy: ACC

Dubai: Fast bowler Raj Limbani accounted for seven wickets as India humbled Nepal by a massive 10-wicket victory in the Asian Cricket Council Under-19 Asia Cup at the ICC Academy Ground on Tuesday.

Put in to bat, Nepal had no answers to the perfect line and length Limbani bowled as they were reduced to just 52 runs in 22.1 overs.

None of the Nepal batter managed to reach double figures with only four boundaries being scored throughout their innings.

Limbani’s dream spell of 9.1 overs saw just 13 runs being scored and three maidens. Aaradhya Shukla and Arshin Kulkarni picked up two and one wickets, respectively.

In reply, the unbeaten opening stand of Adarsh Singh and Kulkarni chased down the paltry score in just 7.1 overs. Kulkarni who is tipped to be the next big thing for India, was more expressive among the two batters.

He tonked five maximums and a single boundary in his knock of 43 not out off 30 deliveries. Adarsh’s run-a-ball 13 included two boundaries.

The win has boosted their run-rate to +1.856 and ensured a spot in the semi-finals.

Shamyl Hussain and Shahzaib Khan of Pakistan in action during the Men's U19 Asia Cup 2023 Group A match against Pakistan at the ICC Academy, Dubai, on Tuesday. Image Credit: Courtesy: ACC

Winning run

In the other match of the day, Pakistan U19 team maintained their winning run defeating Afghanistan U19 by 83 runs.

Pakistan U19, riding on a wave of aggressive batting, amassed a formidable total of 303 in 48 overs. The innings was propelled by stellar performances from the top order, particularly Shamyl Hussain, who blazed his way to 75 off 54 balls, and Shahzaib Khan, who anchored the innings with a well-compiled 79 off 95 deliveries. Their opening partnership of 115-run set a robust foundation for the team. Mohammad Riazullah further bolstered the score with a brisk 73 off 69, showcasing Pakistan’s deep batting strength.

In response, Afghanistan U19 started their chase with intent but couldn’t maintain the required momentum. Despite some resistance, they were eventually bowled out for 220 in 48.4 overs. Numan Shah Agha was the standout performer, crafting a patient 54 off 78 balls, but the lack of substantial partnerships hampered their chase. Pakistan’s bowlers, particularly Ubaid Shah with his economical 3-wicket haul and Muhammad Tayyab’s crucial 3 wickets, effectively stifled Afghanistan’s batting efforts.

The match saw several key moments, including a solid middle-order display from Afghanistan and tight bowling from Pakistan. However, it was Pakistan who capitalise on their batting prowess that made the difference. Afghanistan, on their part, showed glimpses of potential but could not get to win in the end.

This victory for Pakistan U19, marked by an impressive all-round performance, strengthens their position in the tournament.

Brief scores: India U19 beat Nepal U19 by 10 wickets. Nepal 52 all out (Raj Limbani 7-13, Aaradhya Shukla 2-31). India 57 for no loss (Adarsh Singh 13 not out, Arshin Kulkarni 43 not out).

Pakistan U19 beat Afghanistan U19 by 83 runs. Pakistan 303 all out in 48 overs (Shamyl Hussain 75, Shahzaib Khan 79, Riaz Ullah 73; Bashir Ahmad 3-51, Faridoon Dawoodzai 3-49, Khalel Ahmad 2-69, Naseer Khan Maroofkhil 2-44). Afghanistan 220 all out in 48.4 overs (Wafiullah Tarakhil 32, Numan Shah 54, Naseer Khan Maroofkhil 26, Faridoon Dawoodzai 32; Khubaib Khalil 2-45, Ubaid Shah 3-19, Tayyab Arif 3-51).