Under-19 campaign ends in defeat
England bowed out of the Under-19 World Cup on an unhappy note, beaten in a last-over thriller by hosts New Zealand in Christchurch.
Quarter-final defeat left these two trophy hopefuls battling it out for seventh place in the tournament overall, and it was the Black Caps who claimed that qualified accolade with a narrow two-wicket win with two balls to spare.
Chasing a tricky 229 at the Village Green, number seven Logan van Beek hit the winning runs in a calm unbeaten 51.
New Zealand won the toss and inserted England, who were returning to this ground for the first time since their group stage win over Afghanistan.
A big individual score again eluded England, but a useful platform was set by opener Joe Root, who batted through 17.3 overs for his 32.
Jack Manuel, recalled to the side for his second match of the tournament, top-scored with 43 from number four. But when the Worcestershire left-hander fell with the score at 114 for four, England’s innings could have gone either way.
England were able to compile a more than competitive 228 for nine, with Ben Stokes, Ateeq Javid, Paul Best and Adam Ball all hitting quick twenties even though wickets continued to fall.
When New Zealand responded, England again succeeded in making breakthroughs with the new ball, one of the most satisfying aspects of their campaign.
This time it was Surrey’s Matthew Dunn who caused the damage, reducing the opposition to 37 for three by the seventh over.
Then captain Craig Cachopa and Corey Anderson embarked on the partnership that won the match. The fourth-wicket pair put on exactly 100 together in 26.5 overs, taking their side to within 92 of their target.
Nathan Buck was not finished however, returning to remove the pair for 64 and 50 respectively.
England's resurgence continued as Azeem Rafiq ran out Tom Blundell, and at 153 for seven the tourists were favourites.
But van Beek, the grandson of former West Indies and New Zealand wicketkeeper Sammy Guillen, found an ally in number nine Harry Boam.
Boam hung around for 23 in a stand of 63, allowing van Beek to finish off the job. The winning runs arrived off the fourth ball of a tireless Buck’s final over.
In the only other World Cup game today, Bangladesh thrashed Papua New Guinea by 168 runs in a ninth place play-off semi-final at Palmerston North.