England restrict Australia to 223 in World Cup semi-final


EDGBASTON: Australia’s innings ended on a dismal note as the team was all out on 223 with one over remaining in the World Cup semi-final against England at Edgbaston on Thursday.
Jos Buttler struck a blow to Australia by throwing a direct hit that removed Steve Smith (85) in the 48th over.
Mitchel Starc (29) was gone on the next delivery by Chris Woakes when he tried the ball hard but was caught by Buttler.
Steve Smith and Mitchell Starc hung on to lead Australia beyond 200 runs as they tried to post a modest score against England in the second World Cup semi-final at Edgbaston on Thursday.
Together, Smith and Starc managed to post 43 runs on the scoreboard.
Australia’s batting order had crumbled before English bowlers who reduced them to 166 for 7 after 39 overs.
Adil Rashid bagged his third wicket of the day when he removed Pat Cummins (6) who was caught by Joe Root at first slip in the 39th over. Cummins was replaced by Mitchell Starc.
Australia had lost four wickets in 10 overs after a short period of stability provided by a 100-plus run partnership between Steve Smith and Alex Carey (46) after a disastrous start from Australia, as English bowlers tried to restrict the flow of runs. Together, they had added 103 runs to the scoreboard.
Australia’s batting momentum was shaken for the second time in the day when Rashid dismissed Carey in the 28th over. Rashid gave England another reason to celebrate two balls later after he dismissed Marcus Stoinis for a duck in the same over.
Jofra Archer struck for the second time when he dismissed Glen Maxwell (22) in the 35th over. On the other side of the pitch, Smith could only shake his head in disappointment as he saw his third partner depart in eight overs. The score predictor had dropped to 229 runs from 310 at the start of the game.
The defending champions had lost their top three batsmen and managed to score merely 27 runs — their lowest score in an opening powerplay. They were reduced to 15 for three in seven overs after Chris Woakes and Archer swiftly ripped through their top order.
Skipper Aaron Finch was bowled out for a duck by Archer in the second over of play while Woakes picked up the wickets of David Warner (9) and Peter Handscomb (4).
The loss of Finch and Warner so early in the game was a blow to Australia, as the two have consistently built strong partnerships that have proved to be a major contributor in their team’s victories in the group matches of the World Cup.– Agencies


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