PORT OF SPAIN: United Arab Emirates and Ireland booked their places in the Plate semi-finals as the next stage of the ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cup got off to a thrilling start in Trinidad and Tobago.
UAE survived a dramatic batting collapse to edge past Uganda by one wicket and set up a clash with either host nation West Indies or Papua New Guinea in the next round.
Philippus le Roux was Ireland’s hero, digging in for a vital unbeaten 83 to help his side post a total which proved comfortably beyond Canada on Tuesday night.
Ireland will now meet the winners of the clash between Zimbabwe and Scotland while Canada join Uganda in the Plate play-off semi-finals.
Shetty stars as UAE survive scare
Adhitya Shetty shone with the ball and held his nerve with the bat as UAE recovered from a collapse to overcome Uganda by one wicket here.
Shetty took four wickets to help dismiss the Baby Cricket Cranes for 123 and later saw his side home with the bat during a nail-biting finish in Port of Spain.
Uganda opted to bat and started cautiously, adding 30 for the opening wicket before Ronald Opio was trapped in front by Shetty in the 11th over.
The leg-spinner went on to claim Uganda skipper Pascal Murungi (23) among his other scalps, finishing with four for 29 from his 10 overs to keep the batting side in check.
UAE made a strong start to their pursuit of 124, Kai Smith hitting five boundaries in a fluent 25, and were almost halfway to their target in the 15th over for the loss of just Smith.
But the pendulum swung in Uganda’s direction in the space of 14 balls as UAE fell from 61 for one to 62 for five.
Matthew Musinguzi and Joseph Baguma were the destroyers-in-chief and finished with three wickets apiece to set up a thrilling finish.
Le Roux leads Irish charge
A fine unbeaten 83 from Philippus le Roux set Ireland to a 94-run victory over Canada, who remain in search of their first victory of the competition, at Tarouba.
Canada started well with the ball, Ethan Gibson taking two early wickets, including danger man Joshua Cox, who struck a century against Uganda in the group stage, to reduce Ireland to 34 for three.
Le Roux arrived at the crease to begin the rebuilding job but soon lost the company of his captain Tim Tector (15) as Canada continued to apply pressure.
When Gibson (three for 36) returned to clean bowl Matthew Humphreys for a duck, Ireland were in trouble at 90 for seven but Le Roux continued to stand firm. He added 48 with Jamie Forbes (25) and struck 12 boundaries in all as he carried Ireland to 179, at which point he ran out of partners 17 short of a century.
Canada were quickly on the back foot in reply, falling to 12 for three as Reuben Wilson removed both openers. Kairav Sharma (19) and Gurnek Johal Singh (15) were the only batters to reach double figures as wickets continued to fall at regular intervals, with all the bowlers chipping in. —PTI