Following an energy-sapping, winless period for all involved with the programme, the South African under-19s’ five-wicket victory over their Indian counterparts in the third Youth One-Day International (ODI) match in East London on Monday has been welcomed by head coach, Lawrence Mahatlane. Although the junior Proteas went down two games to one in the three-match series, the victory at the Buffalo Park Stadium was more than just a consolation for Mahatlane. The coach believes it is all part of the process of preparing the team for the ICC under-19 Cricket World Cup taking place in South Africa from 17 January – 09 February 2020. Top order batsman, Jonathan Bird was the standout performer for the SA U19s, recording an unbeaten 88 off 121 balls (9 fours, 1 six) to help his team to 193/5 in response to India’s 192/8, with 10 balls to remaining. The SA U19s and India will face off again on Friday, 03 January at the Chatsworth Stadium in Durban to kick off the Youth ODI Quadrangular series that also features New Zealand and Zimbabwe.