England Boost World Cup Hopes With India Win

England Boost World Cup Hopes With India Win

England have boosted their chances of reaching the semi-finals of the World Cup following Sunday’s 31-run win over India at Edgbaston. Defeats to Sri Lanka and Australia had left the hosts’ chances of making it through to the last four hanging in the balance, but they responded well against a previously unbeaten India side.

England won the toss and opted to bat first and that proved a shrewd decision, as openers Jason Roy (66) and Jonny Bairstow (111) put on an opening stand of 160. There were also important contributions from Joe Root (44) and Ben Stokes (79), while the only Indian bowler that made significant inroads in the England batting order was Mohammed Shami, who ended with figures of 5-69.

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England concluded their 50 overs on 337-7, leaving India with a mountain to climb if they were to claim an unlikely victory. India’s cause was not helped following the dismissal of opener Lokesh Rahul for a nine-ball duck, but Rohit Sharma (102) and captain Virat Kohli (66) quickly steadied the ship.

However, India’s run-rate was never up to the required level and they eventually closed their innings on 306-5, with England bowlers Chris Woakes (2-58) and Liam Plunkett (3-55) particularly restricting the visitor’s top order. England can now guarantee their place in the semi-finals by beating New Zealand in their final group match at Chester-le-Street on Wednesday, while India still have work to do to secure their own progress.

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