Skipper Sami Aslam scored a magnificent 108 as Pakistan pulled off a two-wicket win over India in the under-19 Asia Cup cricket tournament here on Tuesday.
Pakistan chased down a challenging 251 with just three balls to spare to register its third straight win of the tournament.
Earlier, riding on Ricky Bhui’s quick-fire 64, India scored 250 for seven off its 50 overs after electing to bat.
India got off to a solid start with openers Ankush Bains (41) and Akhil Herwadkar (31) putting on 74 for the opening wicket in 13.3 overs.
However, leg-spinner Karamat Ali brought Pakistan back into the match as he removed three batsmen, including skipper Vijay Zol (20), to reduce India to 116 for three.
He kept a tight leash on the Indian batsmen as he finished with figures of four for 28 in 10 overs.
For India, Ricky put on small but significant partnerships of 36, 42 and 45 with Sanju Samson (38), Sarfaraz Khan (20) and Deepak Hooda (24) respectively.
His 66-ball 64 included three fours and two sixes.
In reply, left-hander Aslam led from the front as he smacked Indian bowlers to all parts of the ground.
He laid the foundation for his side and put on 72 with Hasan Raza (30) for the third wicket.
Aslam 119-ball knock included 11 fours and a six. Kamaran Ghulam (55) then took his side to the finish line.
But two consecutive wickets — Ghulam on the final ball off the penultimate over, followed by another off the next delivery — made the contest intriguing. Pakistan required five off five balls, which Zafar Gohar (eight not out) achieved by hitting consecutive boundaries off Chama Milind.
Both teams have already qualified for the semifinals where India will meet Sri Lanka while Pakistan will clash with Afghanistan on January 2.
The scores: India u-19 250 for seven in 50 overs (Ricky Bhui 64, Sanju Samson 38, Karamat Ali four for 28) lost to Pakistan u-19 253 for eight in 49.3 overs (Sami Aslam 108, Kamran Ghulam 55, Kuldeep Yadav two for 40).