Bengaluru: New Zealand secured their place in the semi-finals of the World Cup 2023 by defeating Sri Lanka by five wickets in a rain-threatened match at Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on Thursday. The Kiwis chased down the modest target of 172 runs in 23.2 overs, thanks to the contributions from Devon Conway, Rachin Ravindra, and Daryl Mitchell. The victory also boosted their net run rate and gave them 10 points in the points table, leaving Pakistan and Afghanistan with slim chances of making it to the top four.
Sri Lanka, who were put into bat after losing the toss, were bowled out for 171 runs in 38.4 overs. Only captain Kusal Mendis showed some resistance, scoring a quick-fire 51 off 28 balls, with nine fours and two sixes. He was supported by Tikshna, who made 38 off 91 balls. The rest of the batsmen failed to cope with the New Zealand bowlers, who exploited the overcast conditions and the pitch.
Trent Boult was the pick of the bowlers, taking three wickets for 24 runs in 10 overs, including three maidens. He was well supported by Mitchell Santner, Lockie Ferguson, and Rachin Ravindra, who took two wickets each. Tim Southee also chipped in with one wicket.
New Zealand did not face much trouble in their chase, as they lost only five wickets in the process. Devon Conway top-scored with 45 off 42 balls, while Rachin Ravindra made 42 off 36 balls. Daryl Mitchell finished the game with an unbeaten 43 off 32 balls, hitting the winning boundary. Angelo Mathews was the most successful bowler for Sri Lanka, taking two wickets for 35 runs in six overs.
New Zealand is likely to face India in the semi-finals, as the latter is at the top of the points table with 12 points. New Zealand are currently at the fourth position, behind Australia and England, who have 10 points each but a better net run rate. The first semi-final between the first and fourth-placed teams in the league stage will be played at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
|Team||Played||Won||Lost||Points||Net Run Rate|
|1. India (Q)||8||8||0||16||+2.456|
|2. South Africa (Q)||8||6||2||12||+1.376|
|4. New Zealand||9||5||4||10||+0.743|
|7. England (E)||8||2||6||4||-0.885|
|8. Bangladesh (E)||8||2||6||4||-1.142|
|9. Sri Lanka (E)||9||2||7||4||-1.419|
|10. Netherlands (E)||8||2||6||4||-1.635|