India beat Australia by 5 wickets – qualified for Semifinals
An outstanding all-round performance from the Indian team helped them beat defending champions Australia by 5 wickets and also to qualify for the Semifinals. India will face its rival Pakistan in the Semifinal stage on Wednesday 30th March 2011.
Winning the toss first the Australian skipper decided to bat first. India start the proceeding with R Ashwin and Zaheer Khan. Despite the bowling attack from Indian, the Australian openers Shane Watson and Brad Haddin provided a decent start for the home team, contributing 40 runs in 10 overs. But Watson struggling against Ashwin, was clean bowled after scoring 25 runs from 38 balls.
However, Haddin and Skipper Ricky Ponting laid a foundation for the home team providing 70 runs for their second wicket stand. During which Haddin scored his half century, but could not continue as he became the victim of Yuvraj Singh after scoring 53 runs from 62 balls. Soon after Haddin’s dismissal, Yuvraj also removed Micheal Clarke scoring just 8 runs from 19 balls, who was trying to play big shots but was caught at long on by Zaheer Khan.
Micheal Hussey also failed to provide a big score for Australians, as he was caught in trap by Zaheer Khan, who bowled him on a slow delivery after scoring just 3 runs from 9 balls, leaving Australia at 150 runs for 4 wickets in 33.3 overs.
Things were looking good for the Australian team with Ponting and White were comfortable at crease scoring at a healthy run rate. But Zaheer Khan came back into attack and brilliantly caught and bowled White, who scored 12 runs from 22 balls. Australian were 190 runs for 5 wickets from 41.2 overs.
Things changed for the Australian team, when David Hussey arrived at crease. David started his innings with power shots and allowed his skipper Ponting to continue his calm innings to the century, they both contributed 55 runs in few overs. During which Ponting knocked his first century on the World Cup 2011. But Ashwin came back in attach and removed Ponting after scoring 104 runs from 118 balls. However, David Hussey (38 runs from 26 balls) along with Mitchell Johnson (6 runs from 6 balls) brought Australian inning end to a total of 260 runs for 6 wickets from 50 overs.
Zaheer Khan, R. Ashwin and Yuvraj Singh took 2 wickets each.
Chasing a total of 260 from 50 overs, the Indian opener batsmen Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag started with a cautious innings, proving a decent start of 44 runs from 8 overs. But Sehwag looking struggling to score against the Australian pace attack, left early on Shane Watson delivery after scoring just 15 runs from 22 balls, leaving India to a total of 44 runs for 1 wicket from 8.1 overs.
However, Sachin and Gautham Gambhir took the charge and laid a valiant start for the home team providing 50 runs for their second wicket stand. But soon after scoring half century Sachin was caught behind on Shaun Tait delivery, after scoring 53 runs from 68 balls. Gambhir along with Virat Kohli continued the flow of runs. They both scored 49 runs for their third wicket stand, before Kohli was caught by Clarke on full-toss delivery from David Hussey on 24 runs from 33 balls. Soon after scoring his half century, Gambhir was run out by White, after surviving two run out in the match earlier.
Soon after Gambhir departed, skipper MS Dhoni also lost his wickets, he was brilliantly caught by Clarke at point trying to make a fierce cut on Brett Lee’s delivery, causing Indian to a total of 187 runs for 5 wickets from 33.3 overs. It looked an embarrassing loss for the Indian team, who lost 3 wickets for just 45 runs.
However, Yuvraj along with Suresh Raina played a patient innings and provided India its victory and also fixed its spot in the Semi finals of the tournament with 14 ball to spare. During which Yuvraj scored 57 runs from 65 balls and Raina scored 34 runs from 28 balls.
Yuvraj Singh was named Man of the Match for his all-round performance, who took 2 wickets for 44 runs in 10 overs and also scored match winning 57 runs.