England’s hope of securing a spot in the Cricket World Cup semi-finals was officially ended as they suffered a 33-run defeat to Australia, marking their fifth consecutive loss in a tournament.
The day began with a glimmer of hope for England, as Pakistan’s rain-affected victory over New Zealand left a faint possibility of reaching the top four if they emerged victorious in Ahmedabad.
However, England’s batting lineup once again faltered, capitulating for 253 while chasing Australia’s target of 287. This was yet another disappointing performance in a tournament.
Amidst this bleak landscape, there was a moment of optimism while Ben Stokes (64 off 90) held the crease.
However, the tide turned when Stokes was dismissed by leg-spinner Adam Zampa after a sweep that found the leading wicket-taker in the competition at short fine leg.
Subsequently, Moeen Ali’s dismissal off the same bowler left England at 186-7 in the 40th over, seemingly dashing their hopes.
A late resurgence from David Willey, Chris Woakes, and Adil Rashid provided some hope, as they kept England in contention with late boundaries.
Nevertheless, Australia emerged as relatively convincing winners, securing their sixth victory in seven encounters. Rashid was the last to fall, dismissed by the first ball of the 49th over.
The defeat was a harsh blow for English bowlers, who had delivered standout performances with the ball as England restricted Australia to 286 in 49.3 overs.
The dire performance of England’s batters stood out as a major letdown. Jonny Bairstow, Liam Livingstone and skipper Jos Buttler, the top order of the England cricket team failed to reach the double-digit score.
Captain Jos Buttler’s struggle continued, managing just one run before falling prey to Zampa’s impressive bowling.
With their hopes of reaching the semi-finals ended, England’s final two matches against the Netherlands and Pakistan are now about restoring pride and aiming to secure a spot in the top eight for qualification to the 2025 Champions Trophy in Pakistan.
On the other hand, Australia’s fifth consecutive victory has boosted them closer to the semi-finals. Australia’s overall performance led them to clinch a hard-fought victory, with a notable lower-order collapse not costing them the win in the end.