Cricket World Cup: England vs Australia
Venue: Edgbaston, Birmingham.
Date: Thursday 11th July 2019
Arguably the biggest rivalry in world cricket reunites at the semi-final stage of the 2019 Cricket World Cup with hosts England due to take on Australia at Edgbaston. Both sides enjoyed relatively incident-free passages to the knockout stages and with only 2 points to separate them in the table at the end of the group stages, there really is very little between these two sides. England came into the tournament as favourites on home soil and have in the main lived up to their reputation as one of the most dangerous sides in the world. Australia meanwhile were a little more of an unknown quantity with no form to speak of in the build up to the competition but the respective returns of David Warner and Steve Smith looks to have given them a timely boost. The equation couldn’t be simpler for both sides here in this eagerly anticipated semi-final and it looks set to be a real battle to earn that place at Lord’s on Sunday.
England have been the ICC ranked number 1 side in the world at ODI cricket for over 12 months and have developed a generation of nerveless cricketers. They haven’t been at their imperious best so far at this World Cup with defeats to Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Australia blotting their copybook but they turned on the style against both India and New Zealand in their last two games and certainly come into this one full of confidence. The dynamic duo of Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow are back fit and firing whilst Jorfa Archer and Mark Wood have been potent with the ball in recent games too.
Australia finished the group stages in second place in the table with Justin Langer’s men only suffering two defeats from their 9 games played. Their early defeat to India and dead rubber loss to South Africa last time out is unlikely however to have any impact on their momentum going into this one. Injuries look to be more of a disruption for the Aussies with Usman Khawaja and Shaun Marsh already ruled out of the rest of the World Cup and question marks over Glen Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis, they may have to use the depths of their squad here against the old enemy. Their comfortable win over England in the group stages will be fresh in the memory and with the likes of Steve Smith and David Warner in their ranks, they always look to have runs in their side.
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Despite both sides being blessed with multiple batting talents, the enormity of the game could make it a relatively low scoring affair.
Joe Root has stood back and let the likes of Jonny Bairstow and Eoin Morgan grab the headlines at this world cup and he’ll be eager to get in on the act here.
Jofra Archer is England’s joker in the pack and his extra pace could catch some of the Australians by surprise here.
Very few people play pantomime villain as well as David Warner and how he would love to silence the English crowd with a big score here.
Mitchell Starc is a bowler all the England batsmen struggle to deal with and he will be eager to make his mark on his one for Australia.
World Cup semi-finals are notoriously tense affairs and this should be no different between two teams with no love lost. England will fancy their chances in front of their passionate home support but Australia have been one of the form teams of the competition and have already beaten Eoin Morgan’s men at this World Cup. It feels like England’s time though and they will need a big performance here and should get it at 0.75 with BetXChange.com.
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