Three-time former champions and last tournament's losing finalist Australia and dark horse Afghanistan progressed from Group B to the next round of the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup on the final day of the first round matches on Wednesday. (India crush Papua New Guinea to enter quarters)
Jake Doran scored 99 not out as Australia defeated Bangladesh by 74 runs after the Asian side was set a victory target of 245 runs, but required 231 runs to move to the next round ahead of Australia on a better net run-rate, while Afghanistan scored 130 runs in boundaries as it sprinted to the 192-run target in under 26 overs to beat Namibia by four wickets at Abu Dhabi Oval 2.
Karamat Ali captured five for 36 as Pakistan brushed aside the challenge of Scotland by 146 runs in a one-sided Group A match at ICC Academy 2. Following the completion of the first round matches, India, Pakistan (both group A), Australia, Afghanistan (both Group B), South Africa, West Indies (both Group C) and Sri Lanka, England (both Group D) have qualified for the Super League quarter-finals, while Scotland, PNG (both Group A), Bangladesh, Namibia (both Group B), Zimbabwe, Canada (both Group C), New Zealand and UAE (both Group D) will now feature in the Place Championship.
After two days' rest, the tournament will commence on Saturday when Pakistan take on Sri Lanka in the quarter-final at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, and India square-off against England at Dubai International Cricket Stadium. In the Plate Championship matches in Abu Dhabi, Bangladesh will meet Canada and Zimbabwe will face Namibia. The Australia-Bangladesh match was expected to be the feature match of the final day, but it turned it to be an anti-climax as the Asian side lost its last seven wickets for 42 runs to be dismissed for 170 while chasing 245 for victory. Left-arm fast bowler Ben Ashkenazi and leg-spinner Thomas Andrews took three for 33 and three for 35, respectively to bowl their side to the top of Group A.