Co-hosts New Zealand have become the fourth and final team to book their place in the semi-final of the Cricket World Cup, following a thrashing of the West Indies, and their reward for the victory will be a match against South Africa. While in the other contest, there will be a repeat of the 2003 final as Australia take on India.
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The Black Caps secured their place in the final four, largely thanks to opening batsman Martin Guptill, whose double century broke the record the for largest innings in World Cup history, and guided Brendon McCullum’s side to a 143 run victory over Jason Holder’s men. But they will be in for a tougher contest against the Proteas, who demolished 2011 finalists Sri Lanka by nine wickets in Sydney.
The matchup in Auckland will bring together the ‘chokers’ of World Cup history, and while one side will progress to their first final, the other will have to accept that tag for at least another four years. Between them, they had reached nine semi-finals before this year, but failed the clear the final hurdle, losing all of the nine games.
In the other semi-final, Australia – on the back of their victory over Pakistan – will face the holders of the prestigious trophy. India, who looked lacklustre in the pre-tournament Tri-Series involving themselves, their semi-final opponents, and England, have won every game in the competition, and are arguably the form team heading into the latter stages.