England thrash fierce rivals Australia to reach Cricket World Cup final

England's Mark Wood and team mates celebrate takiing the wicket of New Zealand's Kane Williamson during the ICC Cricket World Cup group stage match at Riverside Durham Chester-le-Street

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Skipper Eoin Morgan and Joe Root got busy piling on the runs after Roy's and Bairstow's dismissal under 20 overs. The partnership is taking the game away from Australia's grasp pretty fast.

The first blow for England's innings came when Mitchell Starc trapped Bairstow LBW for 34, but the hosts still looked comfortable at 124-1 after 17 overs. Having struck his fifty Roy then went after Steve Smith, hitting three big sixes on the trot, the last one of them a gigantic six that left the ground. "I don't think you can find any one particular weakness a day out and say tomorrow we are going to predict this is going to happen because the majority of the time you get it wrong".

Thousands of people have entered the NZ Herald-Radio Sport-Air NZ competition to fly to London tonight for the Black Caps' big weekend.

But that counted for nothing when Australia landed a psychological blow in the group stage, beating Ashes rivals England by 64 runs at Lord's last month.

England are a team on the back of setbacks finally getting the conditions they work best with, a flat deck, one short boundary and they made the most of it. India were nowhere near bad, but England did their thing, just as they had in the years preceding the World Cup while they built their reputation as the team to beat. Woakes struck twice early on as Australia slumped to 14-3 after winning the toss in Birmingham but Steve Smith led the recovery for Australia with 85 and Alex Carey made 46. He will play an important role in restricting the Australian batsmen to a low total today.

Plunkett featured at the 2007 tournament, with the 12 years and 39 days wait for his next World Cup appearance bettered only by Shoaib Malik and Anderson Cummins.

"At the halfway stage, we sort of wanted 240, 250 and we knew we would be competitive if we got that because the surface played the way it did", Williamson said.

They were backed by Jadeja and also KL Rahul, who showed tremendous commitment with a diving stop that saved three runs off the penultimate delivery of the New Zealand innings. In his 9-over spell, he claimed three wickets with an exceptional economy of 3.78. It started with the bowling performance and then the way they knocked that off was outstanding.

Archer oozed hostility at the other end, hitting a hopping Carey on the grill of his helmet and dislodging it from his head. Rashid gave England another reason to celebrate two balls later after he dismissed Marcus Stoinis for a duck in the same over.

Former England batsman Lamb, who briefly captained the ODI team in 1990, expects Eoin Morgan's side to dethrone Australia and seal its place in the decider at Lord's. While Trent Boult and Mitchell Santner bagged two wickets each, Lockie Ferguson and Jimmy Neesham also contributed with a wicket each. We are not really bothered as before the World Cup we preferred to chase. "It does not get better than that in my opinion", Boult said.

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