As we enter the climax of World Cup 2019, let’s have a look at the final stage of group matches.

Match 39 – Sri Lanka vs West Indies

The young Avishka Fernando (104 off 103) carried the Sri Lankan innings once Dimuth Karunaratne was out for 64 off 51. Quick fireworks by Lahiri Thirimanne, at the end with unbeaten 45 off 33 helped Sri Lanka put up a daunting 338/6. Although none from the top four could really play big innings from the Windies, Nicholas Pooran rose to the occasion. He smashed 118 off 103 and ensured West Indies did not surrender.  He was there till the 48th over and helped his team past 300 runs. Fabin Allen was brilliant with 51 off 32. But once Pooran was gone the tail could add only seven runs and eventually lost the match by 23 runs. Lasith Malinga was the best bowler with 3/55. 

Match 40- India vs Bangladesh

Putting to Bat first Rohit Sharma (104 off 92)  hit his fourth century of this World Cup. He became the second Indian to register more than 500 runs in a single edition of this mega event after Sachin Tendulkar. Rohit and KL Rahul (77 off 92)  added 180 runs for the first wicket and made another record for India in World Cup for first wicket partnerships. Rishabh Pant scored 48 off 41 and Dhoni added 35 more off 33 balls. India finally finished with 314/9. Mustafizur Rahman took 5/59. In reply, Bangladesh started off decently as Shakib Al Hasan (66 off 74) scored yet another half-century. The later part saw Mohammad Saifuddin scoring 51 off 38 but none from the top could capitalize on the good starts. Jasprit Bumrah took four wickets whereas Hardik Pandya scalped three. India won the match by 28 runs and became the second team to secure their plan in the semi-finals.

Match 41- England vs New Zealand

England delivered yet another good performance to enter the next stage of the tournament. The opening duo carried the innings to set a score of 305/6. Jason Roy scored 60 off 61 whereas Jonny Bairstow was terrific with 106 off 99. Eoin Morgan, the skipper added 42 more. Trent Boult, Matt Henry, and Jimmy Neesham scalped two each. On the contrary, it was an absolute collapse on the Kiwi side. Tom Latham was the highest scorer with 57 off 65. Mark Wood took three wickets. 

Match 42- Afghanistan vs West Indies

West Indies, batting first scored 311/6 as most of the batting line delivered. Evin Lewis and Nicholas Pooran scored 58 each, Jason Holder added 45 off 34 balls, and Shai Hope ended as the highest run-getter with 77 off 92. In reply, Afghanistan tried to chase it down with utmost determination. Ikram Ali Khil (86 off 93), Rahmat Shah (62 off 78), and Asghar Afghan (40 off 32) tried to continue the chase. But a collapse at the slog made it impossible for the Afghans. Carlos Brathwaite (4/63) and Kemar Roach (3/37) ran through the lineup. 

Match 43- Bangladesh vs Pakistan

This match officially ended the journey of Pakistan’s World Cup campaign. They had a mathematical chance of entering the semi-final by registering an impossible win against Bangladesh. Imam Ul Haq (100 off 100) and Babar Azam (96 off) set the momentum for another high scoring match. Imad Wasim added 43 off 26 towards the end and Pakistan finally finished with 315/9. They had to all out Bangladesh for seven runs which was absurd. Bangladesh 221 runs. Thanks tp Shakib one again for 6 off 77. Shaheen Shah Afridi, the youngster was a revelation who grabbed six wickets and send Bangladesh home. 

Match 44- India vs Sri Lanka

Andre Mathews when the entire top order failed. He scored 113 off 128 and was accompanied by Lahiru Thirimanne (53 off 68) and Dhananjaya de Silva (29 off 36). Sri Lanka set a target of 264/7 for India. Bumrah, as usual, the best bowler in the lot for India took three wickets for 37 runs. Centuries from both openers, Rohit ( 103 off 94) and KL (111 off 118) won the match for India withing 44th over. This was only the third instance of both openers scoring 100s. 

Match 45- Australia vs South Africa

The match saw South Africa finally performing at far in their last match in the World Cup. Batting first, Faf du Plessis scored a 94-ball 100 and Rassie van der Dussen added 95 runs off 97 balls. They put a mammoth 325/6 although the result did not matter much. Australian batters, in reply, failed to chase it down and were all out for 315. But David Warner continued his good form and scored his third ton of this tournament. His 122 off 117 and Alex Carey’s 85 off 69 were only the good part of the chase. Kagiso Rabada took three wickets while Dwaine Pretorius and Andile Phehlukwayo scalped each. Australia finished the group stage in second place.

Off-field headlines: 

Vijay Shankar was ruled out of World Cup 2019 due to a toe injury. Mayank Tiwari has replaced him.

Usman Khawaja and Marcus Stoinis were ruled out following injuries. Mathew Wade and Peter Handscomb are the replacements.

Final Standings After Group Matches:

TeamMWLNRPtsNRRStatusFinal rank
India971115+0.809Qualified1
Australia972014+0.868Qualified2
England963012+1.152Qualified3
New Zealand953111+0.175Qualified4
Pakistan953111-0.525Eliminated5
Sri Lanka93428-0.919Eliminated6
South Africa93517-0.030Eliminated7
Bangladesh93517-0.322Eliminated8
West Indies92615-0.225Eliminated9
Afghanistan90900-1.322Eliminated10

Most Runs:

PlayerTeamRAveSR10050
Rohit SharmaIndia64792.4298.851
David WarnerAustralia63886.5779.833
Shakib Al hasanBangladesh60673.7196.025
Aaron FinchAustralia50756.33102.223
Joe RootEngland50062.5091.723
Kane WilliamsonNew Zealand48196.2077.221
Babar AzamPakistan47467.7185.513
Jonny BairstowEngland46251.3397.322
Virat KohliIndia44263.1495.105
Faf du PlessisSouth Africa38764.5089.613

Most Wickets:

PlayerTeamWAveEcon4WI5WI
Mitchell StarcAustralia2616.615.1822
Mustafizur RahmanBangladesh2024.206.7002
Lockie FergusonNew Zealand1718.584.9610
Jasprit BumrahIndia1719.524.4810
Mohammad AmirPakistan1721.054.9011
Jofra ArcherEngland1722.764.7800
Shaheen AfridiPakistan1614.624.9611
Mark WoodEngland1623.065.2200
Trent BoultNew Zealand1524.674.6820
Mohammed ShamiIndia1413.785.4821

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