Hazlewood, Warner, Marsh almost seal the semi-final berth for Australia
Australia 161 for 2 (Warner 89*, Marsh 53, Gayle 7/1) beat West Indies 157 for 7 (Pollard 44, Hazlewood 39/4) by eight wickets
Australia faced West Indies in their last group match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 at Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi on Saturday, November 6. West Indies lost their last match against Sri Lanka and got eliminated from the race of semi-final berth of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021, whereas Australia defeated Bangladesh in their previous game due to fifer of leggie Adam Zampa.
Australia skipper Aaron Finch won the toss and opted to field first.
West Indies lost three wickets in powerplay while taking on bowlers
Caribbean openers Evin Lewis and Chris Gayle charged against opponent bowlers in the first few overs. Lewis pummeled three consecutive fours off medium-pacer Josh Hazlewood, whereas Gayle pulled one for six over the deep mid-wicket boundary in the same over.
Gayle whacked another six to Pat Cummins over long-on boundary, though Cummins hit back by shattering stumps of Gayle on the next delivery only. Hazlewood cleaned up wicket-keeper batter Nicholas Pooran and Roston Chase in a single over to leave West Indies in a dire state.
Late assault by Skipper Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell
Previous game hero, leggie Adam Zampa scalped the big fish, Lewis on 29. Hazlewood picked his third wicket by sending Shimron Hetmyer to the dugout on 27. Skipper Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell played some extravagant stokes in the death overs. Pollard cracked a four and six in the 17th over bowled by Cummins.
Also, he smashed two boundaries in the next over. In the final over, left-arm speedster Mitchell Starc snared Pollard, however, Russell finished the innings on a peak with two mighty sixes.
West Indies managed to put up a respectable total of 157 after losing seven wickets in the allotted 20 overs.
David Warner gives a glittering start to the chase
West Indies skipper Pollard handed over the new ball to spinners, Akeal Hosein and Roston Chase. Aussie opener David Warner looked in fine touch and struck a boundary in the second over. He cracked another two boundaries in the next over and one six over the deep mid-wicket boundary.
In the meantime, Hosein uprooted stumps of Finch in his second over. However, Warner continued to play his strokes to reach his 20 th fifty in just 29 balls. One down batter Mitchell Marsh played second fiddle to Warner in the first few overs.
However, in the tenth over, he whipped a powerful flat six and two boundaries off Russell.
Warner and Mitchell Marsh guide Australia to win
Warner and Marsh smashed occasional boundaries in the middle overs. Mitchell Marsh pummelled two boundaries off Jason Holder and reached his fifty on the next delivery in just 28 balls.
Due to such a remarkable batting performance by both batters, Australia reached on the verge of a win against Caribbeans. Warner smashed one boundary and followed it with a humongous six to backward square leg boundary. Mitchell Marsh got caught by Holder at mid-off, which finished their match-winning partnership of 124 runs.
However, Warner helped his team to cross the line by his sensational unbeaten knock of 89 runs off just 56 balls. He cracked nine fours and four mammoth sixes in his match-winning knock.
Australia almost through to SF
Australia’s best chance of qualifying for the semi-final depends on England beating South Africa in the 39th match of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 at Sharjah, which will mean that the Aussies will end up at the second place in Group 1 and get a straight entry into the semi-finals.
If South Africa manage to beat England by a margin of 61 runs or more then Australia will be thrown out of the World Cup.
What Lies Ahead
As West Indies were already eliminated from the race for a semi-final spot, they would leave UAE after this loss, whereas Australia will wait for the result of the game between Proteas and Englishmen to see if they can book their spot in the semi-finals of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.
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