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World Cup Semi-Final Team Guide: England closing in on the title

England’s effort is a success. This is their very first semi-final in a creation. More to the point, they’ve managed to market their bowling fortunes, going from base of the economy rankings in the last two years to second. Along with their scoring pace, despite suggestions that they have been becalmed, is the best in the championship.

The surprising element is the guts. When chasing gettable totals against Australia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, or lack of it. Jeez, that last defeat was a stinker and should they move on to lift the trophy, it is difficult not to wonder exactly what previous World Cup winners could have done to that Sri Lanka second XI. Ahead of the championship they had an 85% win rate in the chase. Their warm-up loss to Australia currently takes on a different hue.

One suspects, but that if they could overcome a tough semi-final against Australia then there could be no stopping them. Who knew that Jason Roy was the secret to their mojo? Those crushing wins over India and New Zealand (England were enjoying knockout cricket do not forget) have educated them they are the very best in the world. This column laid them for glory only on the relationship between their cost and also the loopholes in the specialty. We may evisage backing them and got it wrong.

There’s, of course, room for advancement. Jos Buttler’s form is a small stress while it remains to be see if niggles into the likes of Jofra Archer, that has been a sensation, and Adil Rashid have some bearing.

Australia 3.10
Price differential pre-tournament: – 0.25
Batting average tournament ranking: 3rd Strike speed: 2nd
Bowling market tournament rank: 5th Strike rate: 2nd

If England have evolved, Australia have, er revolved. It has been revolutionary stuff from the Aussies, who’ve been pretty much impossible for two years but have hit upon a formula and, when beating the favourites at Lord’s, looked World Cup winners in waiting.

David Warner has set a poor record in England supporting him, and of course that the ball tampering row, to vie for top tournament runscorer honours, Aaron Finch, also because race, has’merely’ carried on in rich vein and Mitchell Starc gets the top wicket-taker section sewn up with 24.

Do they have a weakness? Sure. They need to have gone bigger against Pakistan, Sri Lanka and England following a platform was constructed. If it comes to the crunch against fast runscorers in England and India in a potential final, that could be their undoing. It is something they have struggled with since the last World Cup.

What you can’t accuse these is being too reliant on Warner and Finch. Against West Indies and New Zealand the middle- and lower-order captured them out of the mire. ENgland, nevertheless, represent their toughest task yet. .