KUALA LUMPUR: Title contenders India and South Africa pounded their rivals in impressive style yesterday to cruise into the semi-finals of crickets Under-19 World Cup here.
India, seeded second behind defending champions Pakistan, proved the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) was no distraction as they thrashed England by seven wickets at the Kinrara Oval.
South Africa rode on a brilliant all-round performance by captain Wayne Parnell to crush Bangladesh by 201 runs in the second quarter-final at the Bayuemas Oval.
India await the winner of todays clash between Sri Lanka and New Zealand in the semi-final.
The other semi-final will pit South Africa against the winners of the Pakistan-Australia clash.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) yesterday warned IPL team owners against poaching the junior players for the lucrative Twenty20 extravaganza till the World Cup was over.
The Indian team here have been besieged with phone calls from IPL agents over the past week offering contracts reportedly ranging from US$20,000 to US$50,000.
IPL rules mandate that each of the eight city franchises should have a minimum of four Under-21 players in their line-ups.
The players have been told not to have contact with anyone connected with the IPL, team official Hitesh Patel said.
The BCCI are very strict about this. IPL team owners have been told to stay away from the team till the World Cup is over. AFP