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SportsCricketICC World Cup: Australia beat South Africa; seal final date with India

ICC World Cup: Australia beat South Africa; seal final date with India



Australia beat South Africa by three wickets to enter ODI Cup final, set up title showdown against .

In what will be a replay of the 2003 World Cup final, Australia and India will square off for the crown in Ahmedabad on Sunday.

Australia bowled out South Africa for a below-par 212 despite David Miller's defiant 101 but the chase was not as straightforward as Pat Cummins and his team would have liked.

Travis Head (62) led Australia's rollicking start before a mid-innings wobble put the five-time champions in a spot of bother.

South Africa did not let big partnerships bloom but Australia eventually reached the target with 16 balls to spare with Steve Smith (30) and Jos Inglis (28) providing useful cameos.

Tabraiz Shamsi raised South Africa's hopes with two quick wickets. After dismissing Marnus Labuschagne (18), Shami picked up the big scalp of Glenn Maxwell, who fell for just a single.

But Steve Smith and and Josh Inglis kept Australia on course for a win. Gerald Coetzee breathed life into Proteas as he removed the set Smith to reduce Australia to 174/6 in 33.3 overs. But needing just 39 from 99, Australia was still in a comfortable position.

South Africa hit back with wickets, but Australia stayed on course for a win in the second semifinal. Keshav Maharaj ended Travis Head's stay at the crease as the opener departed for 62 off 48.

After losing a couple of quick wickets, Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne slowly rebuilt the chase as Proteas looked to build pressure with wickets.

After 29 overs, Australia reached 124/3, needing 89 from 30 overs to seal their place in the final.

With the bowlers having restricted South Africa to 212, David Warner and Travis Head got Australia's chase underway in the second semifinal of the ongoing ICC Men's ODI World Cup at the Eden Gardens on Thursday.

Warner and Head got the chase off to a steady start as they scored 39/0 at the end of five overs. Warner punished Kagiso Rabada as Australia brought up their fifty in just 5.3 overs. Just as Australia looked to runaway with am easy win, Aiden Markram came into the attack and struck on the very first ball. Markram dismissed the Warner to pick up the first wicket. Kagiso Rabada struck next as Mitchell Marsh departed for a duck.

But Head kept the board ticking as he brought up his half-century off forty deliveries. Despite the wickets Australia stayed on course for a comfortable win.

David Miller absorbed extreme pressure with phenomenal ease on way to a rearguard 101, allowing South Africa to post a fighting 212 against Australia in the second World Cup semi-final in Kolkata on Thursday.

Under gloomy and windy conditions, South Africa showed familiar signs of choking when their top-four Quinton De Kock (3), Temba Bavuma (0), Rassie van der Dussen (6) and Aiden Markram (10) departed cheaply to have them reeling at 24/4 in 12 overs.

Mitchell Starc (10-1-34-3) and Josh Hazlewood (8-3-12-2) were breathing fire making full use of the conditions, but after a 40-minute rain delay, it was the Miller show.

Miller's 116 ball-effort was his sixth ODI century and the first one for Proteas in a World Cup knock-out game.

The southpaw took a blow on his finger from a Josh Hazlewood snorter, but he remained steady and unleashed his ‘Killer-mode' smashing eight fours and five sixes. On a turning wicket, Miller had little trouble and was brutal especially against Adam Zampa who leaked 55 runs from his seven overs.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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