T20 World Cup: India qualify for semifinals with 24-run win over Australia

All eyes on Afghanistan vs Bangladesh now

Team India qualified for the semifinals of the T20 World Cup 2024 with a 24-run win over Australia in their last Super 8 clash to top Group 1 in Saint Lucia on Monday.

Captain Rohit Sharma’s marvellous 92 combined with a superb bowling effort helped India secure a comfortable win over the Aussies. With three victories in a row in the Super Eight, India became the third team to book a semi-final berth.

In pursuit of a 206-run target, Australia was restricted to 181/7 in 20 overs. The chase began disastrously with the loss of David Warner in the very first over. Mitchell Marsh (37) and Travis Head then put together a 77-run stand for the second wicket before Kuldeep Yadav disrupted the partnership in the 9th over.

Glenn Maxwell contributed a brisk 20 off 12 balls, combining with Head for a 41-run third-wicket partnership before Kuldeep struck once more. Subsequently, Australia’s innings faltered as they lost wickets consistently, with Indian bowlers maintaining tight control over the run rate.

Earlier in the game, after winning the toss and opting to field, Australia’s decision seemed justified when Josh Hazlewood dismissed Virat Kohli for a duck in the second over. However, Rohit Sharma counterattacked fiercely, scoring 51 runs in the powerplay, which included hammering 29 runs off Mitchell Starc in the third over.

India concluded the power play at 60/1. Rohit’s half-century came off just 19 balls, marking the third-fastest fifty by an Indian in T20 World Cups.

The second-wicket partnership of 87 runs between Rishabh Pant (15) and Rohit was ended by Marcus Stoinis, who dismissed Pant at the close of the eighth over with India’s score at 93. Starc later claimed Sharma’s wicket in the 12th over when he was on 92 off 41 balls.

Following Rohit’s departure, Suryakumar Yadav (31 off 16), Shivam Dube (8 off 22), and an unbeaten Hardik Pandya (27 off 17) propelled the Indian innings forward. Pandya’s final flourish helped India reach a total of 205/5 in 20 overs.

Josh Hazlewood stood out for Australia with figures of 1/14 in four overs, while the remaining bowlers conceded runs at an economy rate of at least 10.25. Starc and Stoinis supported Hazlewood with two wickets each.

Australia will be knocked out of the tournament if Afghanistan beat Bangladesh in the last game of the Super Eights at Arnos Vale Ground Arnos Vale, St Vincent on Tuesday, 25 June, 2024 at 6:00 am.

India will play England in the semifinals at Guyana National Stadium, Guyana on Thursday, 27 June, 2024 at 8:00 pm, while South Africa will face either Afghanistan or Australia in the other semifinal.

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