Pakistan outclassed South Africa to storm into the ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup semifinals at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch today.
The Green Shirts chased down a modest target of 190 with three wickets in hand, as man-of-the-match Ali Zaryab shone again with the bat, hitting a sure-footed 74 not out to take his team home.
Pakistan restricted South Africa to 189-9 after winning the toss and electing to bowl first. Muhammad Musa and Shaheen Shah Afridi were the most successful bowlers with three and two wickets each, respectively.
Wandile Makwetu top-scored for the Proteas with 60.
Both the teams had qualified for the quarterfinals with two victories and a defeat, but Pakistan emerged as winners of Group D, edging out Afghanistan on net run rate, while South Africa had to settle for second place in Group A after being beaten by New Zealand.
After losing their opening fixture to Afghanistan by five wickets, Pakistan came back with a roar against Ireland, bundling out their opponents for 97 thanks to a brilliant spell by Shaheen Shah Afridi. The Green Shirts then chased down the target in just 8.5 overs, boosting their net run rate.
They then sealed top spot in Group D with a three-wicket win over Sri Lanka in a thriller.
Pakistan are the third-most successful team in ICC U-19 Cricket World Cup history, behind only India and Australia, having taken home the title twice, in 2004 and 2006.