LINCOLN, New Zealand, CMC – West Indies warmed up for the defence of their ICC Under-19 World Cup title by brushing aside minnows Papua New Guinea by eight wickets, in their first official warm-up match here yesterday.
The reigning World champions restricted Papua New Guinea to 105 all out in the 42nd over before racing to their target in the 23rd, to make a winning start to their campaign.
Bhaskar Yadram slammed an unbeaten 37 from 23 deliveries while opener Keagan Simmons and (23) and captain Emmanuel Stewart (21) produced patient innings in support.
Earlier choosing to bat first at Lincoln Green, Papua New Guinea were undermined by left-arm spinners Jeavor Royal (2-4) and Ashmead Nedd (2-10), along with off-spinner Alick Athanaze (2-15), all of whom picked up two wickets each.
Opener Igo Mahuru top-scored with 22 while Ovia Sam chipped in with 21, combining in the best stand of the innings by adding 28 for the third wicket.
Royal claimed Mahuru and Athanaze accounted for Sam as Papua New Guinea slipped to 70 for eight in the 32nd over – a position from which they never recovered.
In their run chase, West Indies Under-19s suffered an early setback when the free-scoring Kimani Melius was lbw to left-arm swing bowler James Tau off the fifth ball of the innings without scoring.
However, Simmons struck two fours in a 43-ball knock and Stewart, three boundaries in a 53-ball innings, rebuilding the innings patiently in a 52-run, second wicket stand.
When Stewart was stumped off off-spinner Boge Arua in the 16th over, Yadram arrived to dominate the remainder of the innings in two small but handy partnerships.
He slammed five fours and two sixes, driving stands of 24 for the third wicket with Simmons and 29 for the fourth wicket with Cephas Cooper, who finished 11 not out.
West Indies Under-19s take on Zimbabwe Under-19s in their second official warm-up on Wednesday at the same venue here, before opening their Group A preliminary campaign with a tough clash with hosts New Zealand Under-19 in Mount Maunganui on January 13