Australia eye T20 World Cup last four spot after overpowering West Indies

Warner and Marsh feature in 124-run stand to help secure eight-wicket victory with 22 balls to spare

Australia put in their best effort when it was most required in their T20 World Cup final group phase game against the West Indies.

They needed to win and did in style, routing the West Indies by eight wickets and with 22 balls to spare at the Zayed Cricket stadium in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.

It took their tally to six points and raised their net run rate above South Africa in Group 1.

Having cleared the first hurdle, Australia now await the outcome of the late game between England and South Africa to know if they have booked their place in the last four stage.

West Indies posted 157-7 after Aaron Finch elected to bowl first and despite losing three wickets early wickets.

Opener Evin Lewis smashed five fours in a 26-ball 29. Shimron Hetmyer (27), captain Kieron Pollard (44 off 31), and Andre Russell, who blasted two sixes and a four for a seven-ball 18, chipped in with useful contributions.

Josh Hazlewood, who went for 19 in his first, came back strongly to finish as Australia’s most successful bowler with 4-39.

David Warner then gave Australia a flying start as he dominated the first wicket stand of 33 before his captain Finch (9) played on to a delivery from spinner Akeal Hosein in the fourth over.

Warner, joined by Mitchell Marsh, then continued to flay the West Indies attack before the latter fell after a 124-run stand for the second wicket with the scores tied .

Marsh hit five fours and a couple of sixes in a 32-ball 53.

Warner was superb on the day. He remained undefeated on 89 off 56 balls, thumping nine boundaries and four maximums.

“Felt satisfying to be there at the end,” Warner said after picking up the player of the match award.

“The key was to play my natural game. It's about targeting the first two balls and I was able to do that. The bowlers have been outstanding for us.

“We knew they would come out hard against us. We know the firepower West Indies have, and they got to a very competitive total.”

Finch added: “It was a really pleasing day. I thought it was going to be a long day the way Evin Lewis played.

“We held our nerve nicely. The way David managed his innings, got off to a flyer and allowed Mitch Marsh to get into his innings. He's been a super player for a long time.

“Can't understand why people doubted him. We have to wait for the South Africa-England game and keep our fingers crossed. I'm sure someone will be streaming it. If it doesn't go our way we can hold our head high that we won four out of five.”

Updated: November 6th 2021, 2:26 PM
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