Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Pak U19 Group Stages Review

Blogger HR reviews Pakistan U19s success in the group stages :

The Pakistan U-19 world cup campaign is off to a great start with wins against the West Indies, Papua New Guinea and a last over thrilling victory against the Bangladeshi tigers. The architect of these victories has been none other than another Akmal but with a different second name, the star I am talking about is called Babar Azam. Babar Azam is the cousin of the Akmal brothers and plays as an opener who can bowl 10 overs of off spin. Babar averages a strong 46.72 in youth cricket for the 12 matches that he has played for Pakistan U-19s. The highlight of this young man’s fresh career has been the 129 he scored against West Indies in the opening match of the U-19 World Cup. Babar an aggressive opener required a mere 132 balls to get to the score of 129, the aggression seems to be the blood of the Akmal family. In the same match Babar was able to bag two West indies wickets while under pressure after the Caribbean openers set a good platform for the chase adding 120 runs for the first wicket, Usman Qadir broke the opening stand but it was Babar who wrecked the West Indian middle order sending 2 batsmen back to the pavilion for ducks, eventually ended up with a bowling figures of 2-35 after the big hundred he scored earlier in the day and won the man of the match award.

The second match was against Papua New Guinea where Usman Qadir shattered the batting line up of the minnows taking a bagful of 4 wickets sending their batsmen for one run less than a 100. Chasing a small target of 100 experimenting was Azeem Ghumam by sending Ahsan Ali to open instead of Babar Azam although it didn’t made much of a difference as Babar was in the crease the 3rd ball of the opening over after Ahmed Shehzad was sent packing for a duck, in the very next over the 2nd opener Ahsan Ali was back in the hut and Pakistan was dashed to 0 for the loss of 2 wickets. In comes Azeem Ghummam who along with ideal support from Babar Azam steered Pakistan to a comfortable position, Babar ended the match in style by being not out till the last ball of the match and scoring a good enough 40 runs.

The 3rd match was against Bangladesh, calling them minnows will be injustice to this extremely talented team. Batting first Bangladesh posted a challenging total of 250 after some economical bowling from Usman Qadir & Shahzaib Ahmed. Chasing the tricky total Azeem Ghumam avoided mistakes & sent the regular openers to start the chase, it paid dividend after both the openers added a century stand finally breaking on 104 after Ahmed Shehzad got out for a steady 52 from 95 balls. The hero of the match once again Babar Azam who had other plans, scoring 91 runs proved enough for a victory & a second man of the match award for this young emerging star.

Pakistan has now stormed to the quarter finals & now will have to play some more competitive cricket where they will be facing good sides and hopefully we will see some more promising performances from the stars of the future. Another emerging talent is Usman Qadir son of former test cricketer Abdul Qadir, after learning the craft of leg spin bowling from his father he has already won matches for Pakistan U-19 and he along with Babar Azam might become the find of the tournament, Danish Kaneria should start biting his nails & so should the Pakistani national openers. The 129 scored by Babar Azam is his highest score ever which just highlights the attitude of this youngster giving away his best effort on the big stage is a great achievement. Let’s hope Pakistan wins back the U-19 World Cup once again from the rivals India.


Maz said...

We are in the quarter finals! This is extra special this time around because if we win the competition then we have won the U19WC the most times, overtaking Australia who have also won the competition twice like Pak.

Babar Azam(15 years of age at Pakistani dodgy age) has produced another top innings with a score of 92 to consolidate on his 129 and 40no in the previous two matches, whereas a top friend of mine Usman Qadir has taken 8 wickets in just 3 matches. I say get them into the national team :D

Just for everybody’s awareness the quarter final will be played on Friday night televised on Sky and it will be against either India or England ! What a match in prospect :D

Maz said...

HR yaar top thread but u missed out the brilliance of Muhammad Waqas who hit 20 of the last over to get us over the line !

Wasim said...

The pace department looks weak which has been the main reason behind our success in this tournament in past.

May be we should send the still 17 year old Aamer for the quarter finals:)

But I am impressed with Babar Azam and Usman Qadir. Babar has eclipsed Ahmed Shahzad and Azeem Ghuman with his performance.

Maz what are the chances of Pakistan against India or SA in quarter finals.

We have struggled against the Bangla boys and the WI do you think we will be able to overcome stronger teams.

Stani Army said...

You know why this makes me depressed? It's because I wonder where these guys disappear?

The likes of Anwar Ali, where is he? The ball to Rohit Sharma, yes, that Rohit Sharma, swung in from 3rd slip to take his off stop as he left it. Where are these 2006 boys and what will happen to today's crop?

Maz said...


Maz said...

Wasim, depth in batting and spin holds the key. So much quality in those departments.

Stani, I agree but this team is rated to be the best ever so we might see some players emerge and transfer onto the international scene. Especially the likes of Usman and Babar regarding they stay fit.

Maz said...

WASIM :"We have struggled against the Bangla boys and the WI do you think we will be able to overcome stronger teams".

Bangla were actually a tournament favourite. They are very strong @ U19 level.

Maz said...
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Maz said...

I think the PCB management deserve credit because the preparation in the build up to this event was excellent such as the Zimbabwe tour and Lankan tri series as well as many domestic youth matches. Ijaz Ahmed the coach seems to be doing a good job.
I am also surprised that Babar has done so well because the conditions in NZ are very challenging and different to the ones he would have been brought up on. On another note, I hope the pressure doesn’t get to the team. They have a had a 100% winning streak thus far, they should be positive and confident of beating other sides and going the distance as the tournament gets into crunch mode!

Maz said...

countdown to game.....

Maz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maz said...

I believe that if Pak beat India they will go on and win the competition and make history of course by doing it as they would have then won it 3 times, the most and of course 3 in 4 times.

India is the defending champions and I believe if Pakistan beat them that they should go on and win the competition as nothing is really standing in their way after that except for perhaps Azeem Rafiq’s side but they had a relatively easy group so weren’t really tested but they do have top players like Stokes, Payne and Vince to name a few who have starred and impressed in the group stages.

Reverse Swing said...

a hell of a match comming on Staurday I guess between India and Pakistan and I think Sky or Start Cricket will be broadcasting it LIVE , hmm hmm hmm

I am impressed with 15 year old Opener we have

Maz said...

Spot on RS. Live from 9:25 on skysports.

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