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Dropping Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma in early overs could have proved costly for Australia had they lost the ICC World Cup semi-final match against India at Sydney. But, Australia did not have to repent those two missed chances. After Dhawan’s dismissal, India never looked to be reaching anywhere near the target, 329. Dhawan’s 45 off 58 gave the initial momentum for the team to make the ‘impossible’ happen. No team batting second has made it so far in any WC semi-final. The destiny was already on Australia’s side. In fact, the toss itself was the big decider of the match. Dhoni’s men would have had at least 20 per cent more chances had the toss been in the ‘Captain Cool’s favour, as it mostly does.

As if it had been a bad omen – at least on two occasions – Indian fans rekindled their hope for a victory, only to be dashed in the next delivery! Rohit Sharma, after struggling to take the grip against tight spells of Aussie speedstars, recovered by hitting a Mitchel Johnson delivery over the ropes. The Indian fans thought it might be Rohit’s day today. Nay’ it was Mitchel’s, instead. The Delhi lad saw his stumps going haywire in the next delivery! Similarly, Suresh Raina looked settled in the 23rd over when he punished James Faulkner by clearing the fence. Faulkner made sure Raina’s back to the pavilion in the next ball! Behind the stumps, Brad Haddin did not any mistake that Raina did by a none-can-understand shot.

Now that the Men in Blue are out of the race, the Cup is going away from India, to another continent. This is for the first time that both the finalists are from Australia/Oceania continent. In fact, New Zealand had never reached the semi-final stage so far. Although the Australia are a much stronger side when it comes to global cricket, the two neighbours are strong arch rivals. New Zealand had already shown its determination for the Cup by not losing any single match, even against Australia. If Martin Guptil and Brandon Mccullum can uphold the reputation they earned this WC, Aussies are in for a big surprise. Else, it will be the fifth Cup for the latter.

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