Captain Nandu’s century steers West Indies to plate semifinal … Thorne among wickets

Although they have been knocked out of the ICC U19 World Cup, the West Indies U19 team played their hearts out in their Plate Quarterfinal encounter, in the process thrashing Papua New Guinea by 169 runs.
This success must be credited chiefly to a scintillating 128 knock from Mathew Nandu and the two wickets he took; as well as some aggressive power hitting from Kevin Wickham at the end of the innings, followed by Isai Thorne’s pacey innings which earned him two wickets as well.
Batting first, the men in maroon got off to a perfect start, as Nandu and Shaqkere Parris shared a solid 155-run partnership. The duo played with brilliance and class as they picked the boundary at will, frustrating the PNG bowlers. Eventually Parris fell for a well-played 64, which included eight boundaries and two maximums.
Nandu, however, continued to rally on. A clutch of wickets fell, but Nandu held firm and played his natural game, eventually bringing up his century – some much-needed runs for him in the series.
He then found the perfect partner in reserve batsman Kevin Wickham, who notched up his second half-century in two games. Wickham, in particular, supported Nandu at the other end, as it rained sixes and fours from Nandu’s end.
When Nandu fell for 128 (15*4, 6*2), Wickham persisted in smashing the bowlers to all parts of the ground. In the end, the West Indies posted 317-6 in their allotted 50 overs, Wickham remained unbeaten on 61 off 48 deliveries, as he crafted an innings which included four towering maximums and three boundaries.
Bowling for PNG, Boio Ray took 3-43, while Patrick Nou, Barnabas Maha and Rasan Kevau each bagged one wicket.
Sent in to bat having to chase a mammoth total, the PNG scoring got off rather slowly, as they took their time chasing a 300+ target, knowing they haven’t surpassed the 100-run mark in the tournament.
Nathan Edward swung the ball in and bagged the PNG’s first wicket, and Shiva Sankar chipped in with one as well, forcing PNG onto the back foot. The PNG batsmen’s scoring rate dropped, but Isai Thorne cartwheeled the stumps of Barnabas Maha to make things even worse for them.
Nandu then brought himself on, and with persistence he bagged two wickets. Thorne also snapped up one more wicket, while McKenny Clarke and Anderson Mahase wrapped up the PNG innings for 148 in 37.4 overs.
The successful WI bowlers were Matthew Nandu with 2-14, Isai Thorne with 2-30, and McKenny Clarke with 2-34. Additionally, Anderson Mahase, Nathan Edward and Shiva Sankar each bagged a wicket.