Bennett, Falao impress for Zimbabwe Under-19s despite defeat
Pakistan Under-19s – 315-9 in 50 overs (Haseebullah Khan 135, Irfan Khan 75, Abdul Faseeh 27; Alex Falao 5/58, Mcgini Dube 3/68)
Zimbabwe Under-19s – 200 all out in 42.4 overs (Brian Bennett 83, Matthew Welch 26, Tendekai Mataranyika 26; Awais Ali 6/56, Zeeshan Zameer 2/32, Ahmed Khan 2/40)
Pakistan Under-19s won by 115 runs
Brian Bennett scored a brilliant 83 while Alex Falao claimed a magnificent five-wicket haul for the Zimbabwe Under-19s, even though they succumbed to a 115-run defeat at the hands of the Pakistan Under-19s in their ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cup 2022 group match at Diego Martin in Trinidad on Monday.
The Pakistanis had compiled a massive total of 315 for nine wickets when batting first in what was virtually a two-man show by Haseebullah Khan and Irfan Khan, as none of their other batters reached 30.
The Zimbabwe Under-19s won the toss and opted to field first.
Mcgini Dube struck in the third over, as he had Muhammad Shehzad caught at the wicket for five, with the scoreboard on nine.
Abdul Faseeh stayed in with Haseebullah Khan until the score reached 55, when Falao took a return catch to dismiss him for 27.
Then came a difficult time for the Zimbabweans, as the two Khans piled on the agony with their partnership, which eventually realised 189 runs and lasted 28 overs at more than a run a ball.
When Falao finally removed Irfan Khan through a catch by David Bennett, the score was 244 for three and there were six overs left.
Their opponents used those overs well to plunder the bowling and take their score past 300, with Haseebulah finally departing to Falao for 135 – he faced 155 balls and hit four sixes and 10 fours.
The remaining batters threw their bats at the ball, got runs and got out in selfless fashion, with the number nine Zeeshan Zameer scoring 21 not out off only six balls, including three sixes.
The final total was a daunting 315 for nine wickets.
Falao took five of them, but they cost him 58 runs in nine overs, while Dube finished with three for 68 in 10 overs.
With such a huge target before them, the Zimbabwe Under-19 batters had no choice but to throw their bats at the ball almost from the start.
Steven Saul was out for 14 off 13 balls, and the hero of the match against Papua New Guinea, the captain Emmanuel Bawu, was caught at the wicket for five.
Wickets continued to fall, although Matthew Welch made 26, and seven wickets were down for 111 runs.
At this stage, though, Tendekai Mataranyika joined Brian Bennett and the two put up a fine fight.
While Mataranyika played a mainly defensive game, Brian Bennett continued to attack brilliantly, and they put on 83 in 19 overs for the eighth wicket.
Brian Bennett was eventually caught out at 104 for his superb 82, scored off 92 balls with a six and 11 fours.
Mataranyika soon followed for 25, but these two had done much to preserve Zimbabwe’s pride and dignity in a difficult situation.
The last pair took the score to 200 before the innings closed in the 43rd over.
Awais Ali, a medium-pace bowler, had done most of the damage with the ball for the Pakistanis and finished with figures of six for 56.