The Indian colts have won the U19 World Cup four times so far.

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For the third successive time a youth World Cup will witness the colts from India in the finals of the tournament. With a strong batting line-up, a potent pace attack and some wily spinners, India have easily been the team of the tournament and a title win appears all but inevitable on Sunday. Here we weigh their chances based on historical records.

Overall record in under-19 World Cups

 India have been the most successful team in under-19 World Cups with four titles in their kitty and a fifth one well in sights this time around. Since the inception of the tournament in 1988, the India colts have won 76.3% of their games. In the last three World Cups, the India under-19 side has made the World Cup finals, winning once in 2018 and losing to West Indies in 2016.

TEAMS IN UNDER-19 WC - OVERALL RECORD

Team

Played

Won

Lost

Tie

NR

Win%

 India

77

58

18

0

1

76.31

 Australia

73

54

17

0

2

76.05

 Pakistan

75

53

21

0

1

71.62

 South Africa

67

47

19

0

1

71.21

 West Indies

77

47

30

0

0

61.03

 England

81

48

32

0

1

60

 Sri Lanka

80

43

36

0

1

54.43

 New Zealand

72

33

38

0

1

46.47

 Bangladesh

70

48

20

1

1

70.28

 Afghanistan

30

14

15

0

1

48.27

 Zimbabwe

74

34

40

0

0

45.95

India in under-19 World Cups

 India have made it to seven under-19 World Cup finals in the 13 World Cups so far at youth level. This includes six World Cup finals in the last 8 World Cups at under-19 level. It is to be noted that in the first two editions of the World Cup – in 1988 and 1998 – India finished at 6th and 5th respectively. They emerged surprise winners in 2000 under Mohammad Kaif’s captaincy beating Sri Lanka in the finals in Colombo.

READ: ICC U19 World Cup 2020: A few learning lessons from the Indian colts

It took eight years for them to win the tournament again, this time under the current national team skipper Virat Kohli. They beat the Wayne Parnell-led South African side in the finals by D/L method. In 2012, India won the title again under Unmukt Chand, thumping Australia in the finals. They also won in 2018 – the last edition of the World Cup in New Zealand – under Prithvi Shaw with Shubman Gill finishing as the Player of the tournament.

INDIA IN UNDER-19 WORLD CUPS

Year

1988

1998

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016

2018

2020

 India

6th

5th

1st

3rd

3rd

2nd

1st

6th

1st

5th

2nd

1st

Finals

India under-19 in knockout games

India’s under-19 side has been outstanding in knockout matches over the years (this includes matches outside the World Cup too).

India under-19 in knockout games

Match Type

Matches

Won

Lost

Tie

NR

Win %

Finals

25

22

2

1

0

88.0%

Semi-finals

12

11

1

0

0

91.7%

Quarter-finals

8

6

2

0

0

75.0%

Preliminary round

124

98

24

0

2

79.0%

They have won 88% of all tournament finals, 91.7% of all semi-finals and 75% of the quarter-finals. If they do get into the semi-finals, India’s youth team more often than not goes to the finals and more often than not wins the tournament too.

That they have lost just 2 finals in 25 attempts shows just how good the team has been over the years in crunch games.

India under-19 against possible opponents

India will face one of Bangladesh or New Zealand in the finals. The other semi-finals of the tournament will see these two teams go head-to-head.

Now, New Zealand and Bangladesh don’t really have impressive records in the under-19 World Cup and the semi-final spot is perhaps a good high for them. That they head into one of the all-time best under-19 India sides further dents their chances.

Opposition

Matches

Won

Lost

Tie

NR

vs Bangladesh

22

18

3

 0

1

vs New Zealand

19

16

3

0

0

Over the years, India’s under-19 side has dominated Bangladesh and New Zealand at youth level. They have only lost thrice each to these sides in all under-19 matches. In under-19 World Cups, India have never lost to New Zealand’s youth side, winning all seven matches between the two teams. Against Bangladesh, they have won on three out of four matches in under-19 World Cups with the sole loss coming in 2002 at Auckland.

Prediction: Whichever team qualifies for the final, India’s chances for winning the tournament is pretty high given their record against these teams, general record in under-19 World Cups and record in knockout games.

Feature image courtesy: Twitter/ @cricketworldcup