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Friday, Oct 24th

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West Indies beat New Zealand in Super Over to keep Semi-final hopes alive

gayle_stormThe West Indies kept their hopes of making the semi-finals of the World T20 alive with a hard fought win over New Zealand in a Super Over. Batting first, the Windies were bowled out for an under par score of 139 with none of their batsmen getting past 30. Doug Bracwell and Tim Southee picked up 3 wickets apiece to put New Zealand on top. However, the Kiwi batsmen once again flattered to deceive with the exception of Skipper Ross Taylor, who made an unbeaten 62 from just 40 balls. It wasn't enough though as New Zealand ended on 139-7 in their 20 overs. In the subsequent Super Over, New Zealand posted a very competitive 17 runs, but the West Indies got over the finish line with a ball to spare with Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels doing the business.

With matches in the Super Eights being consistently won by sides chasing, it came as no surprise that the New Zealand skipper Ross Taylor decided to have a bowl on winning the toss in Pallekele on the final day of matches in that wonderful yet rain deprived city.

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Sammy: “We will give it all we have”

West Indies plan to throw all they have at New Zealand when the two teams meet in their final Group 1 Super Eights match of the ICC World T20 tournament on Monday afternoon, at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium.

The Windies enter the match third in the four-team group and a win would put them in a strong position to qualify for the semi-finals later this week. Group leaders Sri Lanka will play second-placed England on Monday night and that result could have a bearing on whether or not the West Indies advance.

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West Indies and New Zealand qualify for ICC Women's World Twenty20 semi-finals

West Indies and two-times finalist New Zealand qualified for the semi-finals of the ICC Women's World Twenty20 Sri Lanka 2012, after each recorded victories on the final day of Group B matches in Galle on Sunday. A strong all-round performance by Stafanie Taylor cemented a West Indies victory over South Africa by 10 wickets, while New Zealand defeated host Sri Lanka by eight wickets, with 26 balls remaining.

After the final Group B matches, West Indies has finished on top of the table with New Zealand second. Their opponents in the 4 and 5 October semi-finals in Colombo will be confirmed after tomorrow's match between defending champion Australia and former winner England. In contrast, South Africa and Sri Lanka will play in the play-offs in Colombo on Wednesday 3 October and their opponents will also be known after India-Pakistan match.

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India coast to a comfortable 8 wicket win against Pakistan to keep semi-final hopes alive

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virat_kohliTeam India bounced back from the thrashing they received at the hands of Australia to cruise to a facile 8 wicket win against arch-enemies, Pakistan on Sunday night. This victory not only maintained India's hundred percent record versus Pakistan in Word Cup's but also kept India's chances of reaching the semi-finals alive. The key to India's success was their icy cool approach and much better big game temperament. India's collective bowling brilliance skittled out Pakistan for an appalling 128. The only saving grace in Pakistan's effort was the 47 run partnership between Shoaib Malik (28) and Umar Akmal (21). While Lakshimpathy Balaji topped the wickets charts with 3 scalps, spin wizard Ravi Ashwin and part-timer Yuvraj Singh bagged 2 apiece. Chasing 129, the Men in Blue cantered to an easy victory with over 3 overs in the hand. Man of the Match, Virat Kohli was yet again the architect of an Indian chase, constructing a classy 78 embellished with 8 fours and 2 sixes. Notably, there were echoes of Sachin Tendulkar in Kohli's body balance, precise footwork and pin-point timing.

The toss of the coin went Pakistan's way and Mohammad Hafeez elected to bat first, investing immense confidence in his 'varied bowling attack' to derail the famed Indian batting in the chase. India discarded their 5 bowler theory, axing Piyush Chawla to pave way for senior opening batsman, Virender Sehwag, who was expected to be reunited with fellow Delhiite, Gautam Gambhir at the top of the batting-sheet. The other change from the Indian camp was that Lakshmipathy Balaji replaced Harbhajan Singh. The hitherto unbeaten Pakistan retained the XI that snatched victory from South Africa with Sohail Tanvir being overlooked once again.

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Australia crush South Africa by 8 wickets to all but guarantee Semi-final spot

shane_watson_batAustralia picked up their second straight win of the Super Eights against a haphazard South African side in Colombo on Saturday evening to all but book a place in the semi-finals of the ICC World T20. The Aussies sit atop Group 2 and will need three results to go against them including a massive defeat for themselves to prevent them from taking a well deserved spot in the last four, an unlikely occurence. South Africa were far from their best today, doing well to reach 146-5 in their 20 overs after having found themselves 86-5 at one stage. Australia though made light work of the target with Shane Watson following up his 2-29 effort with the ball to score 70 from 47 balls to guide his side to victory. Mike Hussey also chipped in with a useful unbeaten 45 while Xavier Doherty was the pick of the bowlers, taking 3-29. 

With their backs against the wall in a do or die encounter in Colombo on Sunday afternoon, South Africa were under the cosh early having lost the toss and been put into bat. Xavier Doherty, called up to the Australian squad for this game in place of Daniel Christian, was given the new ball and rewarded the management's faith in his ability by picking up a wicket in each of his first two overs, dismissing Richard Levi for naught and getting the big fish Jacques Kallis for 6.

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Sri Lanka crush West Indies by 9 wickets to edge closer to World T20 Semi-finals

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jayawardeneSri Lanka picked up an excellent 9 wicket win against the West Indies on Saturday night, racing to their target of 130 with nearly 5 overs to spare to all but guarantee themselves a berth in the semi-finals of the ICC World T20 on home soil. An excellent bowling effort led by Ajantha Mendis restricted the Windies to just 129-5 in their 20 overs, despite an excellent half-century from Marlon Samuels. Sri Lanka had no trouble chasing down the target with Mahela Jayawardene scoring an unbeaten 65 to lead his side to victory.

The Windies made a poor start to the match, with the openers Chris Gayle and Johnson Charles taking their time to place themselves in. The decision backfired when both men fell within the space of three balls with Charles (12) being stumped off Ajantha Mendis, while Gayle (2) was out caught behind to a Nuwan Kulasekara slower ball.

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England Women beat India to claim a place in the World T20 semi-finals

England Women beat India Women by nine wickets in their second group match of the ICC World T20 at Galle International Cricket Stadium today. England have won two group games and have one game still left to play, but victory today secured a place in the semi-finals.

India elected to bat first and were restricted to 116 for six from their 20 overs.

Katherine Brunt claimed the early wicket of Amita Shama in the third over but it was Laura Marsh who broke the 75-run partnership of Poonam Raut (51) and Mithali Raj (35) as Jenny Gunn caught Raut on the boundary in the 15th over. A fine forward diving catch from Anya Shrubsole gave Holly Colvin the wicket of Jhulan Goswami and in the following over the safe hands of Shrubsole saw Marsh (2-22) pick up her second wicket of the day.

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