India vs Australia: Home teams have had a tough time in World Cup semis
Can Australia do one better to set the stage for a Trans-Tasman co-host finale? We will find out on Thursday. (Source: AP)
When India play Australia in the second semi-final of the World Cup, it will be only the second time that they will face a host at this stage of the showpiece event.
The first and only time India faced the host in the semi-final of the World Cup was back in 1983, when they stunned England by six wickets to make the final. India had bowled out England for 213 in the then allotted 60 overs. For England, after the opening stand of 69 between Graeme Fowler and Chris Tavare, there was a regular fall of wickets.
For India, skipper Kapil Dev (3-35), Roger Binny (2-43) and Mohinder Amarnath (2-27) were the key wicket-takers. In their chase, India had reached 50-2 when Amarnath (46) and Yashpal Sharma (61) aligned in a 92-run third-wicket stand to put the visitors on course. In the end, India won with six wickets to spare in 54.4 overs. Sandeep Patil, current chairman of selectors, remained unbeaten on a 32-ball 51 and also hit the winning runs. Amarnath’s all-round effort got him the player of the match award.
Home teams have always had a tough time in the semi-finals starting from the 1975 edition. England exacted revenge in the 1987 edition when they dumped India out of the tournament at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium in the semi-final.
Elsewhere in Lahore, Australia too beat co-host Pakistan in the other semi-final. England lost to Australia in a low-scoring thriller in 1975, then in 1992 New Zealand suffered a heart-breaking loss to Pakistan. Thereafter in 1996, Sri Lanka knocked out co-hosts India on a dry Kolkata surface with active crowd interference.
Only twice have the hosts managed to get past the semi-final stage. England beat New Zealand in the 1979 semi-final to make it to the final. Then in 2011, India beat Pakistan, while Sri Lanka got the better of New Zealand to set up the final between the co-hosts.
In 2015 thus far co-host New Zealand have got through the semi-final stage. Can Australia do one better to set the stage for a Trans-Tasman co-host finale?
Source:: Indian Express