Steve Smith is one of the very reasons why Australia managed to qualify for the semi-final of the 2019 World Cup. He has been a linchpin of the Aussie middle order and has been one of his team’s leading run-scorers in the mega event. The right-hander again put forth his class and elegance and scored a well-compiled 85 in the semis against England at the Edgbaston in Birmingham.
The knock wasn’t a cakewalk by any stretch of the imagination. After Australia won the toss and elected to bat first, Smith had to grill and grind in the middle. In Usman Khawaja’s absence, he came to bat at number three. Jofra Archer got rid of skipper Aaron Finch for a golden duck and the pressure was on Smith to inject momentum into the innings. Chris Woakes was bowling with fire as well.
Smith and Carey rescue Australia
The batter put his head down and staved off the initial burst from Archer and Woakes. Woakes wreaked more havoc as he got rid of the dangerous David Warner and then Peter Handscomb. The English bowlers looked even more menacing as Archer smacked Alex Carey on the chin. Even after getting hit Carey carried on and stitched together a useful stand of 103 runs along with Smith.
Carey got out on 46 after which Smith notched an impressive half-century off 52 balls. Glenn Maxwell was foxed by a slower one from Archer and had to perish for 22. Marcus Stoinis and Pat Cummins fell prey to leg-spinner Adil Rashid. Having lost seven wickets and three wickets left, Smith and Mitchell Starc took charge and added 51 runs. Smith was well and truly looking good for a century.
Unfortunately, Jos Buttler ran Smith out at the non-striker’s end to jolt the Aussies. In the very next delivery, Woakes removed Starc for 29 to get rid of another set batsmen. In the 49th over, Mark Wood ripped Jason Behrendorff’s poles apart to bowl England out for 223 in 49 overs. Woakes and Rashid were the Three Lions’ most successful bowlers with three wickets apiece.
Here is how Twitter reacted during 1st innings
— Fawad Ahmed (@bachaji23) July 11, 2019
England have been magnificent in the field & with the ball in hand .. The skipper also hasn’t missed a trick .. 👍 #CWC19
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) July 11, 2019
— Ashwin Ravichandran (@ashwinravi99) July 11, 2019
Recovery mission from Smith and Carey. These two have done it in this tournament before. England happy to sit back and wait… 🇦🇺🏴🏏
— Michael Clarke (@MClarke23) July 11, 2019
— Russel Arnold (@RusselArnold69) July 11, 2019
— Brad Hogg (@Brad_Hogg) July 11, 2019
I reckon Aust are 40 below par but get Roy and Bairstow early you just never know.🙏
— Mark Waugh (@juniorwaugh349) July 11, 2019
Just a reminder to other countries not in these Semi finals.. fielding is everything. You have to be fit, agile and you must love it! Fielding tells me how the team is travelling.. its spirit.. and camaraderie. #ownit or #gohome
— Dean Jones (@ProfDeano) July 11, 2019
Jos Buttler 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼 https://t.co/C73TovpvOj
— Ben Duckett (@BenDuckett1) July 11, 2019
— Tim Bresnan (@timbresnan) July 11, 2019
— Herschelle Gibbs (@hershybru) July 11, 2019
Joffra Archer is only 24 yrs old but bowls with the smarts, skills and control of someone who has been around international cricket for 10yrs.
— ian bishop (@irbishi) July 11, 2019
— Craig Kieswetter (@kiesy_22) July 11, 2019
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) July 11, 2019
Regardless of the outcome today, Alex Carey has shown throughout the #CWC19 that he is a keeper within the side. Continued to handle pressure exceptionally well, regardless of where he batted & getting hit! #AusvsEng pic.twitter.com/jucaG444aO
— Lisa Sthalekar (@sthalekar93) July 11, 2019
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