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India, SA through to Champions Trophy semis

India, SA through to Champions Trophy semis

India thrashed Pakistan while South Africa edged the West Indies out in the 2013 ICC Champions Trophy thanks to a higher net run rate to become the two teams from Group B to reach the semifinals of the tournament.

West Indies and Pakistan were the teams knocked out of Group B. All teams played out games severely affected by rain to go establish their positions on the Group B points table.

Rain induced breaks and relentless pressure applied by disciplined bowling and backed up by feline fielding meant that Pakistan’s batsmen could not hang on to build on their starts after being put in by India to bat first. Bhuvneshwar Kumar led the bowlers, taking 2/19 in his 8 overs while the highlight of the excellent fielding display was Virat Kohli’s brilliant pick up, roll and direct hit to run out Junaid Khan as Pakistan were bowled out for a paltry 165 in their 40 overs.

India’s batsmen barely broke into a sweat chasing the revised targets changing because of rain interruptions. Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan put up 58 for the first wicket at a healthy rate before the former chipped an easy catch to midwicket. Five overs later Shikhar Dhawan (48 41b 5x4) holed out to long off looking to bring up his third consecutive ODI 50 with a big hit but India were comfortably ahead of the Duckworth-Lewis based par scores all the while. Virat Kohli (22* 27b 3x4) and Dinesh Karthik (11* 15b 1x4) took India past their final revised target of 102 with 3 overs to spare, helping India thump Pakistan convincingly.

A day earlier in Cardiff, West Indies had restricted South Africa to 230/6 in 31 overs in a must win game for both sides. Chris Gayle made a quickfire 36 (27b 5x4 1x6) at the top and Marlon Samuels anchored with 48 in the middle order but SA’s bowlers kept the fight alive, picking up wickets.

Rain was to interrupt WI who were ahead of the Duckworth-Lewis calculated par score but just barely when Kieron Pollard miscued a shot off McLaren and the top edge was caught by Steyn at third man.

The players walked off with the score 190/6 in 26.1 overs after Pollard’s dismissal. Sadly for WI, the par score would have been 187 but Pollard’s dismissal meant it was 190 and the game ended in a tie after rain left no more chances of play. Both teams finished on 3 points but SA went through to the next round based on their much superior Net Run Rate of +0.325 to WI’s -0.075.

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