David Warner scored unbeaten 89 as Australia chased 158 against the Caribbean with 22 balls to spare

Australia reached the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup with an eight-wicket victory over the defending champions of the Caribbean, who said goodbye to Dwayne Bravo and perhaps also Chris Gayle.

Australia topped the West Indies 157-7 with 22 balls to spare in Abu Dhabi, with David Warner (89 no of 56) and Mitchell Marsh (53 of 32) putting on 124 for the second wicket in 75 deliveries.

Australia’s victory meant South Africa had to defeat England by a large margin later in the day to overtake Aaron Finch’s team on the net run speed, but the Proteas missed out after recording only a narrow 10-run victory.

South Africa had to limit the already qualified England to 131 or less after posting 189-2 in Sharjah, but England fell 179-8 as they finished at the top of Group 1 ahead of Australia in second place and South Africa in third place.

Australia will now face the winners of Group 2 – most likely Pakistan – in the second semi-final in Dubai on Thursday, 24 hours after England face Group 2 in Abu Dhabi.

For the excluded Caribbean, their match against Australia marked the end of an era in which all-rounder Bravo bowed to international cricket, and batter Gayle may also have played his last match, and the way he greeted the crowd after being rejected for 15 saw very.

Gayle, 42, drummed two sixes during his stay with nine balls on the court, one off Josh Hazlewood and another from Pat Cummins (1-15), before dragging the latter on his stumps in the third over at Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

Gayle then came after a bowl late in the Australian chase and got Marsh caught in the middle of the fight by Jason Holder before Warner cut the winning runs by Roston Chase in the 17th over.

Bravo, meanwhile, made 10 out of 12 deliveries before becoming Hazlewood’s fourth and final victim – Bravo took the opportunity as he strolled off and embraced Gayle.

Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo are embraced in Abu Dhabi

Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo are embraced in Abu Dhabi

West Indian captain Kieron Pollard (44 off 31 balls) was crushed for his team after being dropped on eight by Adam Zampa from the spinner’s own bowling, while Andre Russell (18 no off 7) smashed the last two balls in the inning, bowled off Mitchell Starc, for six, with one at 111 yards.

Hazlewood returned from being token for 20 in the second over – Evin Lewis (29 of 26) hit three fours in a row before Gayle threw a six – to dismiss Nicholas Pooran (4) and Roston Chase (0) in the third and then Shimron Hetmyer (27 of 28) in the 13th.

Josh Hazlewood took four wickets, including Shimron Hetmyer, who was caught down the leg by an excellent bouncer

Josh Hazlewood took four wickets, including Shimron Hetmyer, who was caught down the leg by an excellent bouncer

Spinner Zampa (1-20), apart from the drop of Pollard, enjoyed another successful outing with the ball and became the leading wicket-taker in the Super 12 stage, taking his number of scalps to 11 when Steve Smith claimed a fine catch long after Lewis ran a googly down the ground.

Zampa had picked up the tournament’s best score of 5-19 against Bangladesh on Thursday before leaning back and watching his team complete an eight-wicket drubbing

The 29-year-old witnessed yet another extensive chase on Saturday, with Australia only losing captain Aaron Finch (9) – bowled by Akeal Hosein – and then Marsh late, through perhaps Gayle’s last act in a West Indian jersey.

Bravo is definitely done though, and the sailor’s last hassle of bowling seems to have numbers of 0-36 from four overs.

The Caribbean finished fifth in Group 1 and must now qualify for the Super 12 stage at next year’s T20 World Cup in Australia.

WHAT’S NEXT?

The equation for New Zealand is simple on Sunday – beat Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi (9.30, Sky Sports Cricket) and they are in the T20 World Cup semi-finals but losing and they are out.

Victory for the Black Caps in Abu Dhabi would bring them to eight points from five matches, ensure they advance from Group 2 along with Pakistan, and eliminate both Afghanistan and India. However, a New Zealand defeat would cause Afghanistan to jump them into second place on the net run-rate.

If that happens, Afghanistan’s focus will turn to Monday’s match between India and Namibia, as Virat Kohli’s team – which almost looked out of the tournament after crushing defeats to Pakistan and New Zealand in their first two matches – will still be able to move up. in second place if they beat Namibia by a large enough margin to improve Afghanistan’s net run rate.

Sunday’s second match is already qualified Pakistan take on the underside Scotland and Sharjah (13.30, Sky Sports Cricket). If New Zealand wins against Afghanistan, Pakistan must win to secure a place in the group. Scotland, meanwhile, are seeking to avoid a fifth loss in a row.

The T20 World Cup continues live on Sky Sports Cricket from 9.30am on Sunday. Watch New Zealand vs Afghanistan in Abu Dhabi followed by Pakistan vs Scotland in Sharjah.

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