Sports correspondent & historian
Mount Maunganui has arrived on the world cricket map with a bang, courtesy of the ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup.
With seven games including the Grand Final at the Bay Oval, television coverage screened around the globe showcased our own piece of paradise to millions around the world.
The television coverage statistics were staggering. Cricket fans in 102 countries around the world, watched the 20 televised matches including all seven broadcast from the Western Bay of Plenty international cricket ground.
In addition, the coverage was complimented by digital coverage in 204 countries, reaching a total of 1.3 billion viewers (figures provided by ICC website).
The television audience for the final stanza was enhanced, with India and Australia setting out to become the first team to win the Under 19 cricket prize for a record fourth time.
Coverage on the Indian sub-continent began around breakfast time, with Indian fans sitting down to enjoy breakfast and cricket.
In the tradition of sports writers giving out awards after major sporting events - SunLive brings you Sideline Sid's winners and losers from the Under 19 CWC.
Best Team - India
Not only did India make history by becoming the first country to win the Under 19 cricket trophy four times, but they did it in style. From their opening game at the Bay Oval, where they put Australia to the sword by 100 runs, they looked the likely winners throughout the competition. Their top order batsmen of Prithvi Shaw, Shubman Gill, Manjot Kaira and Harvik Desai, dominated proceeding in their six straight wins, while their bowlers never failed to bowl the opposition out taking all ten wickets.
Tournament Underdogs - Afghanistan
While there were whispers that Afghanistan could be the hidden gem of the tournament, few imagined that they would grab a place in the Super-League semi-finals. While history will show that the Afghanistan finished fourth, the reality is that wet weather denied them playing off for third place, with Pakistan's better run rate giving them third place on the final standings.
Under Achievers - New Zealand
The drums were beating for the Kiwi side after they white washed Pool A, with three substantial victories, over the Windies, Zimbabwe and South Africa - then the wheels fell off. New Zealand capitulated to Afghanistan in the Super League quarter finals and then went on to lose to South Africa and then England, in 5th to 8th place playoffs.
The New Zealand top order batting attack that dominated their opponents in preliminary play, went missing in action, when the real heat went on.
Under Achievers Two - West Indies, South Africa, England
West Indies, who wore the mantle of defending champions, were a major disappointment failing to gain a berth in the Super League stages of the tournament and eventually finishing in 10th place.
High expectations were held for the cricket heavyweight nations of South Africa and England, however they both tasted defeat in championship quarter-finals.
Batsman of the Tournament - Shubmam Gill
The Indian opening batsman made a huge impact in his sides triumphs. 418 runs at an incredible average of 104.59, Gill had full repertoire from pull shots in front of square to big blows over the boundary. His big century in India's win over arch rivals Pakistan was sublime and he has an IPL contract in his back pocket to boot.
Bowler of the Tournament - Lloyd Pope
While the Aussie spinner had an inauspicious start to his tournament, bombing two catches against India in their preliminary contest, he single handed bowled Australia into the semi-finals. England were chasing just 128 against Australia in the quarter-finals and were in charge at 47 without loss, when Pope entered the fray. A new tournament record of eight wickets (for 35 runs) mesmerised the English batsmen, who capitulated for 96, to hand Australia a place in the last four.
Fans of the Tournament - India
The Bay Oval was given a special treat with India making four appearances at the Western Bay of Plenty ground. Three preliminary rounds against Australia, Papua New Guinea, Zimbabwe and the title decider, brought the Indian supporters to the Bay Oval in their droves. Always friendly and smiling, the Indian fans gave noisy support as their team drive the ball to the fence, took wickets and catches in the field. What a delight to have them at the Bay Oval.
Venue of the Tournament – Bay Oval Mount Maunganui
Without a doubt the Bay Oval reigned supreme, both as tournament headquarters and the numbers through the gate which surpassed any other venue.
Seeya at the Bay Oval when the Black Caps play England.