Georgetown [Guyana], January 17 (ANI): Bangladesh's defence of their ICC Under 19 World Cup title got off to a poor start as they slipped to a seven-wicket defeat against England in their Group A opener on Sunday.
England's bowling attack decimated the Bangladesh batting line-up as the reigning champions were reduced to 51 for nine in the 25th over at Warner Park in St Kitts and Nevis.
No.11 Ripon Mondol hit 33 not out in a spirited last-wicket stand of 46 with Naimur Rohman (11) to drag Bangladesh up to 97, but they were still dismissed with the best part of 15 overs going to waste.
In reply, the Young Lions lost opener George Thomas and captain Tom Prest but Jacob Bethell and James Rew put on 65 before the former was run out just shy of the finish line as England cruised to victory.
Bangladesh captain Rakibul Hasan was part of the side that lifted the trophy in South Africa in 2020 and elected to bat after winning the toss.
The defending champions were folded for 97 in the 36th over after being reduced to 51/9.
England got off to a slightly nervy start with the bat as Bethell survived a run-out scare when SM Meherob could not gather the ball at the stumps with only five on the board.
He survived a close lbw appeal off Ashiqur shortly after before opening partner Thomas began to up the ante after a cautious start.
But having hit three fours, Thomas perished for 15 when he miscued another attacking shot off Ripon to leave England 20 for one in the ninth over.
That breakthrough gave Bangladesh a small glimmer of hope but when the English captain Prest nicked one behind off his counterpart Rakibul for just four soon after, the game was very much on.
However, Rew joined Bethell and together they batted superbly, counteracting the Bangladesh spin attack to alleviate any potential English nerves.
Bethell eventually paid for some hesitant running - which had been a feature of his innings - but by the time he was run out by Ariful for a well-made 44 from 63 balls, the game was all but over.
Luxton strode out to the crease and promptly hit his first ball down the ground for six before Rew, 26 not out off 39 balls, hit the winning runs off the first ball of the 26th over.
England picked up a comfortable two points to go top of Group A ahead of their match against Canada on Tuesday while Bangladesh will look to bounce back on Thursday against the same opponents, who lost to the UAE in their opener on Saturday. (ANI)