Group Stage - Round Six April 1, 2005

England reach semis as India defeat Windies

Cricinfo staff

Sri Lanka 158 (Fernando 78*) beat South Africa 126 (de Alwis 3-19) by 32 runs

Sri Lanka recorded their first victory of the tournament and in doing so ended South Africa's faint hopes of reaching the semi-finals, as Priyanga de Alwis spun her way through some feeble batting to take 3 for 19. Needing an unremarkable 159 for victory, South Africa slumped from 84 for 3 to 126 all out, with only the teenage sensation, Johmari Logtenberg, providing any lasting resistance. In her first meaningful innings of the competition, Logtenberg made 39 from 57 balls, but when she was fifth out with the score on 91, the end came swiftly.

Earlier, Sri Lanka had themselves been in a sticky situation. Hiruka Fernando and de Alwis shared a fourth-wicket partnership of 75 to add some respectability, after South Africa had reduced them to 1 for 3. But their stand merely halted the slide, and after de Alwis (32) edged Shandre Fritz through to Shafeeqa Pillay, they crumbled. After a streaky tournament, Fernando finally came good with an unbeaten 78 - just the second Sri Lankan to strike fifty so far. It never looked like being enough, but South Africa wilted.

New Zealand 180 for 5 (Tiffen 43) beat England 179 (Taylor 46, Brindle 42) by five wickets

England qualified for the semi-finals despite going down to a tense five-wicket defeat against New Zealand at the de Villiers Oval. Needing 180 for victory after another solid performance from Claire Taylor, who made 46, New Zealand had slipped to 59 for 3 in the 19th over when Haidee Tiffen and Sara McGlashan set about rebuilding the innings with a 77-run stand. Tiffin top-scored with 43, but England secured the bonus point that, allied to India's defeat of West Indies, ensured a top-four finish.

In spite of Taylor's efforts, England's total never looked sufficient against an upbeat New Zealand side. Taylor once again led the charge, sharing a second-wicket stand of 75 with Laura Newton after the early dismissal of Nicki Shaw. Louise Milliken, India's nemesis in the last match, struck with the fifth ball to remove Shaw, opening in place of vice-captain Charlotte Edwards, who sustained a thigh strain in Wednesday's victory over South Africa, before Taylor arrived to administer a familiar rescue act. Arran Brindle continued with her good form, adding 42, but after a stodgy batting display, England's bowlers needed to be disciplined if they were to keep the holders New Zealand at bay.

West Indies 135 (Lavine 43, Goswami 4-16) lost to India 139 for 2 (Jain 68*) by eight wickets

India eased to an eight-wicket win, and in doing so ended West Indies hopes of reaching the semi-finals. At one stage West Indies were 20 for 2, before Nadine George (33) and Pamela Lavine (43) lifted them to 61 for 3 in a third-wicket partnership of 41. But Jhulan Goswami (4 for 16) and Neetu David (3 for 11) handed India firm control of the match. An well-paced opening stand of 107 between Anju Jain (68*) and Jaya Sharma (47) brought India to the brink of a victory which meant their final match, against Australia, would decide who finished top of the group stage.

Ireland 66 for 8 lost to Australia 68 for 0 by ten wickets

Clare Shillington bravely chose to bat against Australia, but that was as good as it got for Ireland as they crawled to 66 for 8 from their 50 overs, an agonisingly slow pace. The pace bowler Cathryn Fitzpatrick was the pick of the bowlers, taking 2 for just 9 from her ten overs, while Clea Smith (1 for 16) and Emma Liddell (1 for 13) returned similarly tidy figures. Australia made light work of chasing the modest total, reaching the target without losing a wicket in 14 overs.