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India becomes first team to enter World Cup 2023 semi-finals

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HT Digital,

New Delhi, Nov 2: The Indian cricket team marked a significant milestone on Thursday, becoming the first squad to secure a spot in the semi-finals of the 2023 World Cup. This achievement was sealed with a commanding 302-run victory over Sri Lanka in Mumbai.

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The win marked India’s seventh consecutive triumph in the tournament, maintaining their unbeaten streak. The match at the Wankhede Stadium saw the Indian team displaying their dominance, bowling out Sri Lanka for a meagre 55 runs in a 358-run chase.

The Indian bowling trio of Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, and Mohammed Shami proved instrumental in dismantling the Sri Lankan batting order. This performance echoed their previous victory over Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup final in September.

In that match, India had bowled out Sri Lanka for just 50, with Siraj taking six wickets. Siraj continued his excellent form in Mumbai, claiming two wickets in his first over. Bumrah also had a successful start, dismissing Pathum Nissanka with the first ball of the match.

Siraj and Bumrah were a constant threat to the Sri Lankan batsmen in Mumbai, creating significant movement off the pitch despite its batter-friendly nature. Siraj stood out, notably engaging in an intense contest with Charith Asalanka.

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Shami, India’s first-change bowler, intensified Sri Lanka’s problems, dismissing Asalanka and Dushan Hemantha in his first over. Since his return to the Indian XI as Hardik Pandya’s injury replacement, Shami has been in remarkable form.

He took his third five-wicket haul in World Cups, and second in this edition, with outstanding figures of 5/18 in 5 overs. Siraj also performed well, with figures of 3/16, while Bumrah, who did not bowl after his first spell, had figures of 1/8 in five overs.

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