In the first half of the highly intense second semi-final clash of the ICC World Cup 2019, hosts England gained the upper hand against defending champions Australia at the Edgbaston, Birmingham. The English bowler trio of Chris Woakes, Jofra Archer and Adil Rashid displayed sensational efforts with the ball to restrict the Australian team under a pretty modest total. For Australia, Steve Smith was the lone warrior battling hard against the England bowling attack.
Australia dented with three early wickets
Australian captain Aaron Finch won the toss and opted to bat first because he reckoned that it looks like a really good wicket and will not change much throughout the duration of the game. The in-form Aussie opener David Warner kicked off things in a sensational manner smacking a crisp boundary on the very first ball of the match. However, the England fast bowling duo comprising of Jofra Archer and Chris Woakes also came out all guns blazing as they removed both the Aussie openers, Finch and Warner quite early with just 10 runs on the board.
Peter Handscomb, who was playing in his debut World Cup game, also got out pretty early leaving Australia in a huge trouble at 14 for 3. The pair of Steve Smith and Alex Carey then got together to bail their team out of the troublesome situation. Both the batters showed some remarkable composure and temperament to stitch a fine partnership of 103 runs for the fourth wicket.
However, England leg-spinner Adil Rashid then brought his team back in the game by removing first the well-set Alex Carey, who got out after scoring 46 runs off 70 balls. Rashid also removed Marcus Stoinis in the same over to leave Australia at 118 for 5 after 28 overs. But at the other end, Smith kept playing his natural game and notched up an excellent half-century. Glenn Maxwell came to bat at the number seven position and failed to convert his start of 22 runs into a bigger score.
Smith played an amazing inning of 85 runs off 119 balls that included of six boundaries before getting out in an unfortunate manner. After his wicket, Australian innings also crumbled down as they eventually got bowled out for a nominal total of 223 runs in 49 overs. For England, Woakes and Rashid picked up three scalps each. Archer also finished with pretty economical figures claiming two vital wickets.
Australia 223/10 in 49 overs (Steve Smith-85, Alex Carey-46; Chris Woakes 3/20, Adil Rashid 3/54) vs England.