England U19s 261/7 (Banton 112, Davies 63) beat New Zealand U19s 229 (Jacks 3/31, Woods 3/34) by 32 runs
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By Henry Cowen
England Under-19s finished seventh at the ICC Under-19 World Cup after beating hosts New Zealand by 32 runs in their final play-off match.
Somerset’s Tom Banton was awarded Player of the Match for a fine batting performance that saw him score his maiden Under-19 ODI century and take his team to 261/7.
In reply New Zealand fared well until Surrey’s off-spinning duo of Will Jacks and Euan Woods spun the game back in England’s favour in the last 10 overs.
Vice-captain Jacks – who was standing in to the lead the side with skipper Harry Brook missing out after breaking team rules – took 3-41, while Woods recorded figures of 3-44.
Jacks had earlier won England’s first toss of the campaign and chose to bat, Savin Perera coming back into the team to replace Brook and Banton moving to three in a top-order reshuffle.
Perera and Banks started well on a pitch that England knew only too well – having suffered defeat on the same track against Bangladesh on Sunday.
Banks was bowled for 10 but Banton was determined to get in and make it count. Not distracted by the loss of Perera, caught mid-on, and Jacks – bowled – he settled in alongside wicketkeeper Jack Davies.
Davies, promoted to No.5 in this match, has impressed during his opportunities at the crease in this World Cup, and he was at it again today.
The pair batted sensibly, absorbing the pressure from the New Zealand bowlers and taking their time.
Having suffered collapses in each of their last two games England were set on reaching a competitive total and Banton and Davies pressed on, with both passing their half-centuries.
Davies went for 63 – bowled by Luke Georgeson – to end a partnership of 139, England’s second-highest of the tournament.
Banton continued though and reached his century in the 46th over. It was a responsible effort from the Somerset man and aided by a late cameo from Hampshire’s Tom Scriven it took England up to 261/7.
Dillon Pennington – today sharing the new ball with county teammate Adam Finch – took his fifth and sixth wicket of the tournament inside the first six overs as he dismissed Jakob Bhula and Rachin Ravindra inside three balls. He sent Bhula’s off stump cartwheeling and had Ravindra caught behind.
New Zealand then threatened to take the game away from England as Finn Allen and captain Kaylum Boshier put on 67 for the third wicket.
Woods came on to remove Boshier but Allen found another partner in Katene Clark and the pair added 113 to put the hosts firmly in the box seat.
It was then that Jacks swung the game and precipitated a collapse of seven wickets for 28 runs. The Surrey man took the big two wickets of the set batsmen Boshier and Clark before Woods removed Sandeep Patel.
With panic setting in amongst New Zealand, Jacks then ran out Todd Watson, before Woods took his third – Davies stumping Georgeson for a run-a-ball 9.
Another run out, this time from centurion Tom Banton, and a final wicket for Jacks sealed the game for England who will be delighted to end their campaign with a victory.