Australia vs England, World Cup 2019 semi-final 2: Joe Root breaks 16-year-old record against Australia


Joe Root scripted history during the ICC World Cup 2019 semifinal encounter between England and Australia on Thursday as he claimed the record of most catches by a non-wicketkeeper in a single edition of ICC World Cup. With 12 catches, Root left behind former Australia captain Ricky Ponting’s record of 11 grabs in 2013. South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis and Root’s teammate Jonny Bairstow round up the top-3 with 10 and 9 catches respectively to their names in the ongoing World Cup.

England entered their first World Cup final since 1992 decimating five-time champions Australia by eight wickets.

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Chasing 224 in a World Cup semifinal was not expected to be a walk in the park but England made it just that with an aggressive approach that has become synonymous with them over the past four years.

Openers Roy (85 off 65) and Jonny Bairstow (34 off 43) shared a 124-run stand, their fourth century stand in a row, to do bulk of the job for their team after the bowlers put up an all-round show to dismiss Australia for 223 despite a valiant effort from Steve Smith (85).

Root (49 not out off 46) and captain Eoin Morgan (45 not out off 39) knocked off the remaining runs to complete a famous win in just 32.1 overs. England, who lost three World Cup finals in 1979, 1987 and 1992, now have a golden opportunity to win the elusive crown with a victory against New Zealand at Lord’s on Sunday.

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Earlier, a hostile bowling performance from England pacers broke the backbone of Australian batting. Courtesy Smith, Australia got something to bowl at after a fiery opening spell from Chris Woakes (3/20) and Jofra Archer (2/32) had them gasping for breath at 14 for three.

The gutsy right-hander got some help from Alex Carey (46 off 70) and Mitchell Starc (29 off 36) in posting a fighting total. Besides the England pacers, leggie Adil Rashid (3/54) made a significant contribution by taking crucial wickets in the middle overs.

(With agency inputs)

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