The Windies are scheduled to face off against Afghanistan in a full series set for India in November.

With the country granted Test status in 2017, one of the matches will include a Test, which is expected to begin on November 27.  The series will also include three One Day Internationals and three T20s.  The venue for the matches is, however, yet to be decided.

Afghanistan and the West Indies have played only 10 internationals between them, eight of those were held in the Caribbean. The West Indies lead Afghanistan 5-4 in the head-to-head, their most recent victory coming in the ICC World Cup 2019.

"As per the Future Tours Program (FTP), Afghanistan national team is scheduled to host West Indies for a tour from 5th November till 1st December in India. The series will include three T20Is, three ODIs and a one-off Test match," the Afghanistan Cricket Board said in a statement.

"Ahead of the series against West Indies, the national team is also scheduled to play a one-off test against Bangladesh in September followed by a triangular T20I series that will feature Bangladesh and Zimbabwe," it added.

England opener Jason Roy thinks Australia's confidence may have suffered a blow with their 10-run loss to South Africa on Saturday.

Australia were the first team to qualify for the Cricket World Cup semi-finals but missed out on finishing top of the table as they went down to the Proteas at Old Trafford after India had beaten Sri Lanka at Headingley.

The reigning champions will consequently face tournament hosts England in the semi-finals at Edgbaston on Thursday.

Australia won by 64 runs when the two teams met at Lord's last week, but Roy believes ending the group stage with a defeat may have altered the mood in the Australian camp.

"It should be a great game. I think them losing to South Africa might have knocked their confidence a bit," said Roy.

"When you get to the semi-final stage any team you come up against is going to be a tough ask, mentally and physically. They hammered us at Lord's but who knows what it is going to bring?

"As exciting as it is, we've got to stay as relaxed as we can, understanding that it is a World Cup semi-final that doesn't come around very often and that we've been working towards this for years."

Roy sat out the first meeting with Australia, as well as the games against Afghanistan and Pakistan, due to a hamstring injury.

"I'll be honest, there was a bit of a fear I might be out [for the entire tournament] but I needed to stay positive around the group," said the Surrey batsman.

"I was staying around the lads and travelling with them, so I had to keep giving out positive vibes and try to help where I can.

"But, having been dropped in the Champions Trophy [in 2017] and then working my backside off to get here, and being in good form only to then get injured, I was like, 'give me a break!'

"I thought I was having no luck so that was frustrating and a bit hard to deal with, but I kept things relaxed, worked hard and thankfully I got back and was able to play.

"I'm right where I wanted to be, both mentally and physically. This is the reward for the hard work and sacrifices we all make.

"I didn't put myself in the IPL auction, I did everything I possibly could to get myself to this point I'm at now."

Australia spinner Nathan Lyon expects England to feel a greater burden to perform and reach the final, though.

He said: "They are full of world-class players. They have been the number one team for a couple of years now. They should be going into this World Cup as favourites. It's all on them.

"It's their World Cup to lose if you ask me. We have got nothing to lose, only got stuff to gain."

Windies interim coach Floyd Reifer has hopes of retaining the post full time, despite somewhat of a disappointing ICC World Cup for the regional team.

The 46-year-old former batsman landed the position just ahead of the tournament, after a newly appointed Cricket West Indies (CWI) board removed another interim coach, Richard Pybus, from the position.

Although they were listed as darkhorses of sorts by some fans and a few pundits, they failed to deliver, leaving the tournament with just two wins and sitting second to last on the points table.

 The team started positively with a big win over Pakistan but went on to lose to Australia, England, Bangladesh, New Zealand, India and Sri Lanka, before securing a win against Afghanistan.  Despite the results, however, Reifer believes there were plenty of positives to take from the event.

 “I've learned a lot as a coach working with the guys. This is my first World Cup as well. I've interacted with some of the coaches from the other teams, and I've written down a lot of stuff,” Reifer said.

“I have to do a lot of reflection as well, and [I have to] keep planning and keep building on the positives. I just want to thank the coaching staff for giving me the full support, the players for giving me the full support as well,” he added.

“It's disappointing for us not getting into the final four and pushing towards the World Cup final. The positive is that we played decent cricket and got ourselves in position to win a lot of games and found a way to lose. We got to improve on the small areas, and on the small things that we need to get over the line.”

Ellyse Perry took seven wickets as England were skittled for their lowest ODI total against Australia in a 194-run Ashes defeat in Canterbury.

All-rounder Perry decimated England in their attempt to chase down Australia's 269-7, claiming career-best figures of 7-22, good enough for fourth place on the all-time list in women's ODIs.

The 28-year-old claimed 5-12 with two maidens from her first six overs in a destructive opening spell, with the hosts bowled out for just 75 after 32.5 overs.

It completed a one-day series whitewash for Australia, meaning they hold a 6-0 lead ahead of the solitary Test, at Taunton on July 18.

Perry said: "It was my day today, which was nice, but it's pleasing to win all three ODIs and finish this section of the series as we did. To be as comprehensive as we were was great.

"I've played here before and the slope works really well for us, so it was nice to attack the stumps and let it swing down the hill a bit."

Captain Meg Lanning, who scored 69, added: "I thought all-round we were even better than the last game. With the bat we were in a position to get a few more but England came back at us. But the bowling performance was excellent, Ellyse Perry leading the way."

The Cricket World Cup group stage is over and the build-up to the semi-finals is under way.

Group winners India will take on New Zealand at Old Trafford on Tuesday, with hosts England facing rivals Australia at Edgbaston two days later.

With the feast of cricket coming towards its conclusion, we take a look back at some of the stats from the first round with the help of Opta.

 

BATSMEN

Most runs

1. Rohit Sharma (India) 647
2. David Warner (Australia) 638
3. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh) 606
4. Aaron Finch (Australia) 507
5. Joe Root (England) 500

Batting averages

1. Kane Williamson (New Zealand) 96.20
2. Rohit Sharma (India) 92.42
3. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh) 86.57
4. David Warner (Australia) 79.75
5. Samiullah Shinwari (Afghanistan) 74.00

Fours

1. Rohit Sharma (India) 67
2. David Warner (Australia) 64
3. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh) 60
4. Jonny Bairstow (England) 55
5. Babar Azam (Pakistan) 50

Sixes

1. Eoin Morgan (England) 22
2. Aaron Finch (Australia) 18
3. Rohit Sharma (India) 14
4. Chris Gayle (West Indies) 12
5. Jonny Bairstow (England) 11

Fastest hundreds (by deliveries)

1. Eoin Morgan (England) 57 v Afghanistan
2. Jos Buttler (England) 75 v Pakistan
3. Carlos Brathwaite (West Indies) 80 v New Zealand
4. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh) 83 v West Indies
5. Rohit Sharma (India) 95 v Pakistan

BOWLERS

Most wickets

1. Mitchell Starc (Australia) 26
2. Mustafizur Rahman (Bangladesh) 20
=3. Lockie Ferguson (New Zealand) 17
=3. Jaspirt Bumrah (India) 17
=3. Mohammad Amir (Pakistan) 17
=3. Jofra Archer (England) 17

Economy rate (from seven or more innings)

1. Colin de Grandhomme (New Zealand) 4.46
2. Mujeeb Ur Rahman (Afghanistan) 4.47
3. Jasprit Bumrah (India) 4.48
4. Mohammad Nabi (Afghanistan) 4.61
5. Ben Stokes (England) 4.65

Dot balls

1. Jofra Archer (England) 300
2. Pat Cummins (Australia) 295
3. Mitchell Starc (Australia) 288
4. Trent Boult (New Zealand) 284
5. Kagiso Rabada (South Africa) 273

Sixes conceded

1. Rashid Khan (Afghanistan) 14
2. Yuzvendra Chahal (India) 13
=3. Mohammad Nabi (Afghanistan) 10
=3. Adil Rashid (England) 10
=5. Shakib Al Hasan (Bangladesh) 9
=5. Dawlat Zadran (Afghanistan) 9
=5. Glenn Maxwell (Australia) 9

Runs conceded

1. Mustafizur Rahman (Bangladesh) 483
2. Adil Rashid (England) 433
3. Mitchell Starc (Australia) 432
4. Gulbadin Naib (Afghanistan) 419
5. Mohammad Saifuddin (Bangladesh) 417

Usman Khawaja has been ruled out of Australia's Cricket World Cup semi-final showdown with hosts England on Thursday.

Khawaja and Marcus Stoinis had scans after suffering respective hamstring and side injuries in the defeat to South Africa at Old Trafford.

Matthew Wade and Mitchell Marsh were called up as cover from the A squad earlier on Sunday ahead of their four-day match with Sussex.

Australia coach Justin Langer is uncertain on Stoinis' chances of facing England at Edgbaston but says Khawaja's World Cup is at an end, with Wade to replace him in the squad once the necessary paperwork is completed.

"It's such a pity for [Khawaja], for someone who's been so integral to how we've been playing," he said. "Like Shaun [Marsh, who broke his arm on Thursday] I feel that sad for him that he's going to miss the World Cup semi-final.

"Matthew Wade is coming up, he's in great form, he's had a great 12 or 18 months back home but he also just scored two hundreds [for Australia A] so he's in great nick.

"Mitch Marsh is going to come on standby for Marcus Stoinis just to see how he comes up… If they have to come in they'll be ready to step up."

The Cricket World Cup semi-final spots have been decided, with India, Australia, England and New Zealand into the final four.

But what of the half a dozen teams not to make it through?

Some arguably performed better than expected, while some – we're looking at you, West Indies and South Africa – were hugely disappointing.

For fans of those two sides, our World Cup report card may not make for pretty reading…

 

PAKISTAN (5th, W5 L3 N/R1)
RATING: C+

Ahead of the tournament, all the talk focused on their inconsistency and Sarfraz Ahmed's side lived up to their billing, summed up by their opening thrashing by the West Indies followed by a superb victory over favourites England. They were outclassed by Australia and India but finished strongly, winning four straight matches and only missed out on the semis due to their inferior net run rate, irreparably damaged by that Windies hammering. Mohammad Amir was excellent with the ball, picking up 17 wickets, while Babar Azam showed his class with the bat and Haris Sohail's form made a mockery of Pakistan's earlier faith in spent force Shoaib Malik.

SRI LANKA (6th, W3 L4 N/R2)
RATING: C

The Lions looked massively under-strength coming in, but they could argue that successive washouts against Pakistan and Bangladesh cost them a fairer shot at a top-four finish. The undoubted highlight was their stunning win over England, where veteran seamer Lasith Malinga rolled back the years. At the other end of the scale, 21-year-old Avishka Fernando hinted at a bright future with a marvellous hundred against the Windies in a dead rubber.

SOUTH AFRICA (7th, W3 L5 N/R1)
RATING: E

Even for a country with a long history of Cricket World Cup calamity, South Africa will look back on this campaign as a particularly miserable one. From AB de Villiers' attempted retirement U-turn just before the squad was announced to losing premier quick Dale Steyn to injury, the Proteas were in disarray before game one. A solitary point from their first four matches left them with too much to do as the likes of Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock and Faf du Plessis failed to fill the void left by De Villiers in the top order.

BANGLADESH (8th, W3 L5 N/R1)
RATING: B+

A superb campaign – belied by their final position in the table – spearheaded by the remarkable performances of all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, who racked up 606 runs and took 11 wickets with his wily left-arm spin – the first player to score 500+ runs and claim 10+ dismissals at a World Cup. There were impressive wins against South Africa and West Indies while they ran New Zealand and India mighty close. On this evidence, the Tigers will be genuine contenders in India in 2023.

WEST INDIES (9th, W2 L6 N/R1)
RATING: F

Not bottom of the table, but certainly bottom of the class. A squad filled with giants capable of smashing 100-metre sixes and bowling 90+ mph, the Windies let themselves down badly at this tournament. An opening annihilation of Pakistan promised much, but – scintillating centuries from Carlos Brathwaite and Nicholas Pooran aside – they failed to show the required application. Andre Russell's fitness issues caught up with him midway through the tournament, while 39-year-old Chris Gayle's intention to reverse his retirement looked a mistake. It is time to blood some fresh talent.

AFGHANISTAN (10th, W0 L9)
RATING: D

They may have finished as the only side without a point, but it is not all doom and gloom for Afghanistan. The tournament's lowest-ranked team improved as the campaign progressed, giving India and Pakistan almighty scares in agonisingly narrow defeats. A change of captaincy shortly before the finals, as well as knee-injury victim Mohammad Shahzad arguing against the decision to send him home and Aftab Alam's banishment for a disciplinary violation, will certainly have proved unwelcome distractions. The next World Cup in sub-continental conditions will surely suit a side with four years' more experience.

After five arduous weeks, the Cricket World Cup group stage has reached its climax and four teams are left standing.

Hosts and pre-tournament favourites England briefly flirted with a disappointing early exit before rallying to beat India and New Zealand and reach the last four.

Lying in wait are old rivals Australia at Edgbaston on Thursday, while India and New Zealand will do battle first in Manchester in two days' time.

But before we sit back and take in the final acts of a hugely enjoyable tournament, let's review the thrills and spills (and a couple of comedy moments) of an enthralling group stage.

 

Rihanna delights in Durham

Over a decade ago, Rihanna's smash hit 'Umbrella' enjoyed an extended stay at the top of the UK album charts but there was no need for the brollies at Durham as West Indies faced off with Sri Lanka.

Unfortunately, the Barbados-born popstar saw the Windies beaten by 23 runs, but there was a tearful reunion with assistant coach Roddy Eastwick – a former school teacher of Rihanna's. 


Bees create buzz at The Riverside

An unbroken 175-run stand between Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis stung Sri Lanka at The Riverside.

But it was a swarm of bees that created quite the buzz on social media. The honey-loving insects caused a sudden delay, with players having to hit the deck to take evasive action.


Roy clatters Wilson

We are very, very, very sorry Joel Wilson…but this was undoubtedly hilarious.

Jason Roy brought up a century in England's beating of Bangladesh but, while tracking the progress of the ball, did not see the poor, unaware umpire who was completely clattered by the opener in comical scenes.

Once back to his feet, a slightly sheepish Wilson saw the funny side.


Bairstow answers critics head on

England's defeats to Sri Lanka and Australia drew plenty of criticism at home, not least from Michael Vaughan, which led to an unsavoury back-and-forth with Jonny Bairstow.

But Bairstow responded in impressive fashion, making centuries against India and New Zealand to help England progress to the last four.

Celebrating that latter century, Bairstow rubbed his hair in a seemingly light-hearted jibe at Vaughan's previous treatment to bolster his hairline.


Stokes or Woakes?

Two stunning catches, but who did it better – Ben Stokes or Chris Woakes?

All-rounder Stokes plucked a stunning one-hander in the deep off Andile Phehlukwayo in the tournament's opening match between England and South Africa at The Oval.

Not to be outdone, Woakes took a brilliant full-length dive on the boundary to send Rishabh Pant packing in England's much-needed win over India. Superman, eat your heart out.


Hat-trick heroes

Afghanistan had the chance for a famous upset against India at the Rose Bowl. Twelve runs were needed off four deliveries…enter Mohammed Shami.

The paceman took the vital wicket of dangerman Mohammad Nabi and followed up with the scalps of Aftab Alam and Mujeeb Ur Rahman to end Afghanistan's hopes. Three wickets in three balls.

New Zealand lost out to trans-Tasman rivals Australia at Lord's, but Trent Boult had individual reason to celebrate with a hat-trick of his own.

A stunning finish in the final over of Australia's innings saw Usman Khawaja, Mitchell Starc and Jason Behrendorff fall to full, in-swinging deliveries.

Boult, who has donated the ball to the MCC Museum, had to endure a nervy wait after a Behrendorff review.


Starc brilliance takes down Stokes

England made a dismal start in their pursuit of 286 against Australia at Lord's, slumping to 53-4.

Ben Stokes' courageous 89 threatened a fightback at the Home of Cricket. That was until Mitchell Starc's unplayable yorker swung in late to rattle the base of the stumps to end Stokes' resilience and England's chances of victory.


Pakistan deny Afghanistan

Afghanistan finished without a point after the group games but will rue a couple of missed opportunities – not least versus Pakistan, who slumped to 156-6 chasing 228 at Headingley. 

But captain Gulbadin Naib gave up 18 costly runs in the 46th over and Pakistan edged home with a couple of balls to spare against the underdogs in a dramatic finale.


Farewell Chris

Chris Gayle's final World Cup did not exactly go to plan. The explosive batsman made 242 runs from nine innings as West Indies – fancied by many to challenge – crashed out.

His final knock against Afghanistan yielded just seven runs, but there was time for some typical flamboyance when the charismatic Gayle celebrated a low catch with some press-ups.

A tidy turn with his occasional off-spin also yielded 1-28 and the 39-year-old lapped up the acclaim at stumps.

James Anderson faces a nervous wait to find out if he can play in the Ashes opener after the England and Cricket Wales Board (ECB) confirmed the paceman has sustained a low-grade calf muscle tear.

England's record wicket taker underwent an MRI scan on Friday, which confirmed the damage and he is now set to undergo a rehabilitation programme.

Anderson pulled up hurt playing for Lancashire against Durham on Tuesday and will miss the next two County Championship matches against Northants and Sussex.

The ECB added in a statement that Anderson will be reassessed on an ongoing basis.

It means Anderson's status for the Ashes opener against Australia, which begins on August 1 at Edgbaston, remains unclear and he has just three weeks to prove his fitness.

"England seam bowler James Anderson, who left the field during Lancashire's Specsavers County Championship match against Durham at Sedbergh School on Tuesday, July 2 due to tightness to his right calf, underwent an MRI scan on Friday," the ECB said. 

"The MRI confirmed that Anderson has suffered a low grade calf muscle tear. As a result of the injury, he will commence a rehabilitation programme with the England and Lancashire CCC medical teams."

Speaking on BBC 5 live's Tailenders programme on Saturday, Anderson said he was hopeful of a swift recovery.

"It's frustrating because I've played a lot for Lancs this season and got through pretty much unscathed apart from getting smashed in the knee with a cricket ball," he said.

"But apart from that it's been pretty good. It's just part and parcel of the job, I'm just keeping my fingers crossed it's not too serious and that I'll be back as soon as possible."

Australia have drafted in Matthew Wade and Mitch Marsh as cover as they wait to learn the full extent of injuries to Usman Khawaja and Marcus Stoinis ahead of the Cricket World Cup semi-finals.

Khawaja sustained a hamstring injury in Australia's defeat to South Africa in Manchester on Saturday and his chances of playing against England at Edgbaston on Thursday appear slim.

Captain Aaron Finch was slightly more optimistic Stoinis' side problem was not as severe when addressing the injuries at a post-match news conference.

But Australia are leaving nothing to chance, with wicketkeeper-batsman Wade and all-rounder Marsh brought across from their A team, who begin a four-day match with Sussex on Sunday.

Marsh was also brought into the fold earlier in the tournament when Stoinis sustained a side strain against India, but he recovered to face Bangladesh.

Khawaja and Stoinis are set to undergo scans on their injuries on Sunday.

South Africa captain Faf du Plessis will make a decision on his ODI future "in front of a fireplace with a glass or red wine" after his century set up a Cricket World Cup win over Australia.

Du Plessis made exactly 100 at Old Trafford on Saturday as the Proteas beat the holders, who fell short on 315 all out in reply to 325-6, by 10 runs in the last group game of the tournament.

The skipper stated ahead of the game that he would consider his international future in the 50-over format after leading his country in England and Wales.

Du Plessis hinted that he may continue his ODI career after a victory which ensured Australia will face England, rather than New Zealand, in a semi-final at Edgbaston next Thursday, but gave no guarantees.

Asked whether he had played his last ODI, he said: "I don't know right now. As I said before the previous, or the before the game yesterday, I love playing for South Africa but the big thing for me is to have purpose as a leader.

"I don't want to just play games for the sake of playing games. When I play I want to make sure I'm motivated to keep doing it and right now sitting here I am still, very very much motivated.

"I decided way before this World Cup that I was going to play the World Cup, win or lose, good or bad, and then after the tournament sit down and just like anything just relook at what how hungry you are, how motivated, what has Cricket South Africa, what is their plans?

"So those things will happen over the next three, four weeks. But I really enjoyed today so it will be hard to walk away from the feeling of today and playing international cricket.

"But that will probably be decided in front of a fireplace with a glass of red wine in my hand."

As the sun set on South Africa's Cricket World Cup campaign, the Proteas landed a parting blow on old foes Australia on a glorious evening at Old Trafford.  

Faf du Plessis called for a show of pride from his side in their last game of what has been a miserable tournament and he got it on Saturday.

Du Plessis led by example with South Africa's first century of the World Cup, scoring exactly 100 with great support from Rassie van der Dussen (95).

Australia fell short on 315 in reply to 325-6 in a pulsating final group match, so the holders must pack their bags and head to Birmingham to face England in a semi-final at Edgbaston next Thursday rather than stay in Manchester to take on New Zealand.

South Africa have long since been out of contention for a place in the last four, but they left their mark despite another brilliant hundred from David Warner (122) and Alex Carey's brutal 85.

You would have thought it was Du Plessis' men bound for the semi-finals rather than Australia given the way they celebrated what was an eighth win in the last nine ODIs between the two fierce rivals.

As Imran Tahir and JP Duminy marched off the field after ending their ODI careers on a high note, the defending champions looked like a team that had let an opportunity slip through their fingers.

Usman Khawaja is highly unlikely to face England after suffering another hamstring injury, while Marcus Stoinis is a doubt with a side problem.

Shaun Marsh suffered a fractured forearm in a damaging week when he was struck by a ball from Pat Cummins in the nets, so Peter Hanscomb may be thrown straight into the heat of a showdown with the hosts.

Australia will at least have an extra two days to prepare for a blockbuster last-four clash with Eoin Morgan's men and in Warner they have a player at his brilliant best.

The opener should have been run out in the first over when Kagiso Rabada threw to the wrong end capitalised on that let-off by crafting a third hundred of the tournament.

A busy Warner batted with power, skill and great application in his first match against South Africa since a ball-tampering fiasco at Newlands which resulted in him being banned for a year.

There were more boos and jeers for Steve Smith and Warner in Manchester, where South Africa fans must have been left with mixed feelings, wondering why the Proteas left it so late to show what they can do.

Australia must regroup and Warner could have a major say in whether they shatter England's hopes of being crowned champions for the first time on home soil. 

Usman Khawaja's Cricket World Cup may well be over after he suffered an apparent hamstring injury in Australia's defeat to South Africa.

Khawaja retired hurt before being forced to return in the 10-run reverse to the Proteas on Saturday, scoring 18 before diverting the ball onto the top of his stumps.

Captain Aaron Finch was pessimistic about Khawaja's condition in the post-match presentation, with a scan set for Sunday.

"It doesn't look ideal for Usman Khawaja at the moment," he said. "We'll have to wait and see.

"He's going to have a scan in the morning and we'll make a call based on what the results are there."

Marcus Stoinis also looked to be struggling, although Finch was slightly more positive on that front, but Australia at least have their A team on hand should either player need to be replaced.

"I'm not sure [on Stoinis]," Finch said. "At the moment, it feels okay. But until you get the definitive scans, it's tough to know.

"The whole Australia A squad is here, the four-day guys and the one-day guys. So if they need to be replaced, which I imagine Usman will, there's plenty of guys to come in."

The loss to South Africa saw Australia slip below India, winners against Sri Lanka, into second to set up a crunch semi-final with rivals and hosts England.

Finch added: "It doesn't get much bigger than that: England v Australia in a World Cup semi-final. Hopefully it's a great game."

Meanwhile, Proteas captain Faf du Plessis was left rueing his side's failure to produce such impressive performances earlier in the tournament.

Du Plessis himself scored 100 against Australia, but South Africa have long been out of contention after a dismal start to the group phase.

"After the tournament is when we start scratching our heads and try to figure it out," he said of his side's issues. "It's inconsistent cricket.

"To be in the semi-finals, especially now with this new four-team format, you have to be at your best for most of the tournament.

"If you're not, you need guys to lift the team and win games almost on their own. We weren't at our best as a team and we had guys not doing enough to get us over the line."

David Warner's superb 122 was in vain as Australia lost a thriller by 10 runs to South Africa, a result that means the Cricket World Cup holders will face England in the semi-finals.

India's defeat of Sri Lanka earlier on Saturday meant Australia had to win in Manchester to avoid the hosts in the last four and instead book a clash with trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand.

But in the final match of the group stage the Proteas produced one of the best team performances of the tournament so far to inflict Australia's second defeat of the competition.

Faf du Plessis made South Africa's first century of the World Cup and his 12th in ODI cricket. The former Lancashire batsman thrived with a masterful round 100 on his return to Old Trafford as South Africa posted an imposing 325 for six.

Rassie van der Dussen (95) almost followed his captain to three figures, trying to heave a six off Pat Cummins' last ball of the South Africa innings, but instead picked out Glenn Maxwell in the deep.

Warner should then have been run out by Kagiso Rabada (3-56) in the first over of Australia's reply - the opener facing South Africa for the first time since last year's ball-tampering scandal - and he seemed set to take full advantage of that lapse.

When Quinton de Kock, who made 52 and ran out Marcus Stoinis, produced a majestic catch off Chris Morris' bowling to remove Maxwell for 12, Australia were 119 for four and heading for an eighth loss in nine ODIs against South Africa, only for Warner and Alex Carey to rebuild.

But a wonderful flying Morris catch saw Warner depart as he looked to find fifth gear and, when explosive wicketkeeper-batsman Carey fell to Morris for a buccaneering 85 off 69 balls, Australia were on the brink of defeat.

Usman Khawaja (18) bravely returned to the crease after earlier retiring hurt with an apparent hamstring injury, but diverted the ball on to the top of the stumps while playing a scoop and South Africa closed out their third win of the World Cup.

STARC ON BRINK OF HISTORY

The leader of Australia's attack was not at his best in Manchester, Mitchell Starc's first ball going for four wides in a wayward opening over that cost 14 runs and gave the Proteas a flying start.

But a yorker that ripped through Dwaine Pretorius' defences gave Starc his 26th wicket of the tournament, moving him level with Australia great Glenn McGrath as the most prolific bowler in a single World Cup.

With at least one knockout match still to play, the 29-year-old is almost certain to sit top of the pile regardless of whether or not Australia successfully defend their title, while his late efforts with the bat - hitting 16 off 11 balls - almost set up an improbable victory.

 


WARNER PASSES 600 BUT ROHIT LEADS

There is no doubt Warner is having a quite brilliant World Cup - this was his third century - but despite passing 600 runs for the tournament he is second behind India opener Rohit Sharma in the batting tables.

A third century in four ODI appearances against the Proteas was fully deserved as he punished Rabada's mistake and, if Australia are to win the tournament for a sixth time, there is no doubting Warner holds the key.

He will certainly relish a clash with pre-tournament favourites England. That match will take place on Thursday at Edgbaston, where Eoin Morgan's side have a terrific record.


DUMINY & TAHIR WAVE GOODBYE

There was a winning farewell for veteran Proteas duo JP Duminy and Imran Tahir as both men played their final ODI matches for South Africa.

Tahir was able to roll out his famous celebration when he claimed the prized wicket of Australia captain Aaron Finch for three but he later missed a caught and bowled chance to remove Carey, which could have proven costly.

Duminy's contribution - scoring only 14 runs and taking no wickets from four overs - was more low-key but the Proteas will miss his all-round efforts as they look to rebuild after an underwhelming World Cup that at least ended on a high.

India opener Rohit Sharma will not let himself think about breaking Sachin Tendulkar's record for the most runs in a Cricket World Cup.

Rohit moved to 647 runs for the tournament in England after making his fifth century in Saturday's seven-wicket win against Sri Lanka.

He needs just 27 more runs to surpass India great Tendulkar's haul of 673 at the 2003 World Cup.

Matthew Hayden amassed 659 for Australia in 2007, meaning Rohit sits third in the all-time standings with one and possibly two innings still to come.

No batsman had ever made five centuries before in a single World Cup, so Rohit has already entered the record books.

India's semi-final place was assured long before their trip to Leeds, where Rohit and KL Rahul both made centuries at the top of the order to pave the way for an emphatic victory.

"I'm not thinking about milestones," Rohit said after his innings of 103, which included 16 boundaries.

"I know if I play well all these things will happen along the way. My job is to keep my head straight, keep playing and get the team to the finishing line.

"I want to start every day afresh and I try and come out thinking I've not played any ODIs, I've not made any hundreds in the tournament, it's just the first game of the tournament. That is the kind of mindset I want to get in.

"People around me are talking about hundreds, but that's the challenge of a sportsman: try to keep your head straight and focus on the job at hand."

Captain Virat Kohli has seen his side win seven and lose just one match in the group stage.

Kohli said at the post-match presentation: "We wanted to play good cricket but we didn't expect this kind of scoreline heading into the semis. That's what hard work and consistent performances get you.

"It's a real honour for all of us to play together on the field for India."

Asked about his team line-up for the semi-finals, Kohli said: "More or less everything is set, but we don't want to be one-dimensional. The team that is flexible on the day has more chance of executing what they want to.

"We need a good balance and whatever combination provides the balance for us, I think we'll go ahead with that. We're happy with the way we've played but it's about turning up on the day now and putting another performance in."

Sri Lanka skipper Dimuth Karunaratne praised veteran fast bowler Lasith Malinga, who was playing his final World Cup match in the 50-over format.

"Of course Sri Lankan cricket will miss him. In Test cricket and one-day cricket, he was wonderful - he was the man," Karunaratne said. "He's done a really good job. Everyone has to end their chapter. After that we have to find a new guy."

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