Aussies too good for India, qualify to meet NZ in final

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SYDNEY: So it will eventually be a Trans-Tasman World Cup final on Sunday at Melbourne after four-time champions Australia outplayed defending champs India to win the second semi-final by 95 runs at the SCG on Thursday.

It was clearly evident that once Australia had posted a total in excess of 300, India would struggle to chase it as the pitch had slowed down and was giving some kind of assistance to the bowlers under lights.

No team had had chased 300 plus successfully in a World Cup knock-out match and so it proved when India were dismissed in the 47th over for 233 replying to Australia’s 328-7, which was the highest total achieved in a World Cup semi-final.

Helping Australia to get to that total was Steve Smith who continued his wonderful summer form with the bat with a superb century to take the man of the match award. It has been proved that when Smith scores fifty and over runs for his side they always end up winning.

Smith and Aaron Finch who made 81 laid the foundation for Australia’s big total with a second wicket partnership of 182.

Although Australia lost wickets in the middle with Umesh Yadav picking up four scalps, Mitchell Johnson hit a blistering 27 not out off nine balls for his team to gain the psychological advantage."Certainly feels good, we thought 330 was around par, we had to bowl and field well, the boys did a terrific job,” said Smith reflecting on the victory. “Pleased with my performance big stage tonight, semi-final of a World Cup, just nice to get over the line at the end. I always think of those people who've helped you along the way, really happy and looking forward to Melbourne. Another big hundred would be nice, going to be an amazing moment to play a World Cup final against New Zealand, in our conditions at the MCG.”

Sikhar Dhawan made use of an early let-off by wicket-keeper Brad Haddin to get India off to a good start by putting on 76 with Rohit Sharma which turned out to be the highest partnership of the innings. Once the partnership was broken Australia applied the pressure and soon 76-0 became 78-2 as Kholi also departed for one edging a catch behind the wicket off Johnson.

Faulkner picked up Suresh Raina’s wicket cheaply and once Ajay Rahane was out for 44, India looked vulnerable in their run chase having lost half the side for 178.

They were not helped in their cause when Ajay Jadeja and Dhoni were both run out. As long as Dhoni was out in the middle Indian hopes were kept alive. But the pressure and the increasing asking rate which had risen to over 12 an over proved too much of an effort for the Indian captain.

His departure at signaled the end of the match as Faulkner and Starc cleaned up the tail as India lost their last four wickets for two runs.

“There was too much for me to do, our lower order can't contribute too much in these conditions. Most of the good teams bat quite deep,” reflected Dhoni on the loss.

“They played very good cricket, over 300 is always a difficult score, and I felt it was just over par, they could have had 350. We started okay but they bowled well, and they got the reverse swing going.”

Australian captain Michael Clarke was over the moon. "Obviously really excited, the boys played some outstanding cricket, Smithy's hitting the ball so sweetly and I was really proud of the execution of our bowlers. A lot of the guys sacrificed themselves for the team.

“Losing to New Zealand (in the group stage) gave us a kick up the backside, the boys have turned up for training and the results have showed that. It's a wonderful achievement, we're proud to make the final but it's going to be tough against New Zealand.They're a great team, it's always good to play New Zealand, and we hope plenty of Aussies come out to support us."


A Finch c Dhawan b Yadav 81
D Warner c Kohli b Yadav 12
S Smith c R Sharma b Yadav 105
G Maxwell c Rahane b Ashwin 23
S Watson c Rahane b M Sharma 28
M Clarke c R Sharma b M Sharma 10
J Faulkner b Yadav 21
B Haddin not out 7
M Johnson not out 27
Extras (b-1, lb-7, w-6) 14

Total (seven wickets, 50 overs) 328

Fall of wickets: 1-15 (Warner), 2-197 (Smith), 3-232 (Maxwell), 4-233 (Finch), 5-248 (Clarke), 6-284 (Faulkner), 7-298 (Watson).

Did not bat: M Starc, J Hazlewood.

Bowling: Shami 10-0-68-0 (w2), Yadav 9-0-72-4 (w4), M Sharma 10-0-75-2, Kohli 1-0-7-0, Jadeja 10-0-56-0, Ashwin 10-0-42-1.

R Sharma b Johnson 34
S Dhawan x Naxwell b Hazlewood 45
V Kholi c Haddin b Johnson 1
A Rahane c Haddin b Starc 44
S Raina c Haddin b Faulkner 7
MS Dhoni run out 65
R Jadeja run out 16
R Ashwin b Faulkner 5
M Shami not out 1
M Sharma b Faulkner 0
U Yadav b Starc 0
Extras (lb-8, w-5, nb-2) 15

Total (all out, 46.5 overs) 233

Fall of wickets: 1-76 (Dhawan), 2-78 (Kholi), 3-91 (R Sharma), 4-108 (Raina), 5-178 (Rahane), 6-208 (Jadeja), 7-231 (Dhoni), 8-232 (Ashwin), 9-232 (M Sharma), 10-233 (Yadav).

Bowling: Starc 8.5-0-28-2 (nb1, w2), Hazlewood 10-1-41-1, Johnson 10-0-50-2 (w2), Faulkner 9-1-59-3 (nb1, w1), Maxwell 5-0-18-0, Watson 4-0-29-0.

Last modified on Friday, 27 March 2015 10:07

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