Final eludes young Lions
England Under-19s missed out on a place in the Quadrangular Series final after falling to a disappointing 63-run defeat against India at Townsville's Tony Ireland Stadium.
The young Lions were confident of emerging victorious in the semi-final, having beaten the same opponents on Monday to maintain their 100% record in the tournament.
Yet they were not able to complete a fourth successive triumph and, subsequently, will face New Zealand - who lost to Australia in the other last-four clash - in a third-placed play-off on Sunday at the same venue.
Unmukt Chand and Smit Patel struck 94 and 53 respectively in India’s total of 239 all out from 49.1 overs, after which Mohsin Sayyed claimed 4-31 as England were dismissed for 176 in 44.5.
Having opted to bowl first, England took wickets at regular intervals, but had little answer to skipper Chand.
Brett Hutton and Craig Overton made short work of the openers as the former got rid of Manan Vohra for a breezy 25 before the latter had Akhil Herwadkar caught behind for 12.
Vijay Zol was then dismissed by England skipper Adam Ball and, after Akshdeep Nath departed via a run out, Sam Wood had Baba Aparajith caught and bowled.
Chand, though, found a willing ally in Patel, who struck three sixes in a 63-ball stay and put on 90 with his skipper.
But the former, having hit six fours and four sixes, fell six runs short of a century, as he departed to paceman Aneesh Kapil.
England then efficiently ended the innings, taking the final four wickets for 41 runs as Ball finished with impressive figures of 3-39.
The reply began disastrously as Sandeep Sharma made three breakthroughs; he removed Ben Foakes for a duck and, having got rid of Shiv Thakor for 14, claimed the prized wicket of Daniel Bell-Drummond by bowling the opener for 25.
That was a position from which England never fully recovered as, despite impressive lower-order efforts of 39 and 37 not out respectively from Ball and Jamie Overton, they fell a long way short.