World cup 2019: Australia set 224 runs target for England


After the top order’s collapse, Steve Smith came up with a gutsy knock before England bundled out Australia for 223 in the second semifinals of the World Cup 2019 at Birmingham.

Ashes rivals Australia won the toss at Edgbaston and chose to bat but were in deep trouble at 14 for three, with prolific opening pair David Warner and Aaron Finch, as well as Peter Handscomb, back in the pavilion.

The winners of the match in Birmingham will face New Zealand, who shocked mighty India at Old Trafford on Wednesday.

England s embarrassingly limp first-round exit at the 2015 tournament prompted an overhaul of their approach to one-day internationals for a side that had long placed Test success above all other considerations.

Australian coach Trevor Bayliss was drafted in with the aim of guiding their bid for a first World Cup crown.

The transformation has been impressive, with England climbing to number one in the ODI rankings under the astute captaincy of Eoin Morgan.

Their rise to the summit has been based on dynamic run-scoring, with in-form openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow leading the way at the top of the order and Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler adding enormous power in the engine room of the side.

The addition of fast bowler Jofra Archer has given the host nation an enviable pace attack, which did the damage early on Thursday.

Barbados-born Archer struck with his first ball, trapping Finch lbw for a duck and Woakes had Warner caught in the slips for just nine. Warner, who walked out to boos because of his role in a ball-tampering scandal in South Africa last year, returned to even louder jeers.

Steve Smith, who was also given a 12-month ban for his part in the incident, was given a similar greeting when he made his way to the wicket.

Warner‘s exit brought in Handscomb, only recently called into the squad after Usman Khawaja s tournament-ending hamstring injury, but he was bowled by Woakes for just four.

Australia wicketkeeper Alex Carey had his helmet knocked off by an Archer bouncer and required several minutes of on-field treatment before resuming his innings but he and Smith took the score to 55-3 after 16 overs.

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