(CTN News) – In Thursday’s ICC World Cup 2023 second semi-final at Eden Gardens, South Africa lost to Australia by three wickets.
On November 19, more than 100,000 people are expected to watch the much-anticipated World Cup final between Australia and India, who are seeking their first ICC trophy since 2013.
While the Aussies had an easy and low target, they started on a high note and continued with 7 runs per over rate.
Although David Warner (29 off 18) and Mitchell Marsh (0 off 6) walked back to the pavilion in successive overs, Travis Head continued the charge against the South African bowlers.
They, however, lost wickets in the middle overs and found themselves helpless against the spin attack of Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi, who combined for three crucial wickets.
As wickets continued to fall, Gerald Coetzee picked up crucial wickets, removing Steve Smith and Josh Inglis from the attack.
Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins managed to hold their nerve and guide their side to victory as the Aussies chased the target in 47.2 overs with Head top-scoring with 62 runs.
South Africa has lost four previous Australia World Cup semi-finals, in 1992, 1999, 2007 and 2015. It seems they will have to live with the “choker” tag for some time.
While batting first, South African batters looked clueless against Australian bowlers and kept losing early wickets.
Mitchell Starc gave the Proteas their first blow by dismissing Temba Bavuma for a duck at the end of the first over, who has failed to score in the tournament.
As they batted cautiously, they were dealt another blow when their most in-form batter Quinton de Kock was out for just three runs in the sixth over.
In 11.5 overs, the Proteas were soon 24-4 as the deadly bowling attack of Pat Cummins’ men continued to take wickets.
After looking like their innings were over before scoring 100 runs, Heinrich Klaasen and David Miller provided their side with a much-needed breakthrough and formed an important 95-run partnership.
As they were about to bat, Travis Head increased the Proteas’ troubles by taking Australia two wickets in two balls, removing Klaasen on 47 runs and dismissing Marco Jansen for a golden duck.
Miller didn’t give up and continued to score runs for his side, eventually completing a well-deserved and hard-fought century, but he was dismissed after 101 runs he scored with eight fours and five sixes.
A fantastic bowling display by Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and Pat Cummins contributed to South Africa’s 212-run victory in 49.4 overs.