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Cricket World Cup: Australia keep up winning momentum

Australia will head into their World Cup semi-final against South Africa on high after a strong performance to beat Bangladesh in their final group game.

It was Glenn Maxwell who delivered a double century in the win over Afghanistan and this time it was Mitchell Marsh who got to enjoy his moment in the spotlight, as Australia earned themselves an eight-wicket win over Bangladesh in Pune.

Bangladesh frustrated by Aussies

In bat first, Bangladesh made hard work at times of a good batting surface on their way to posting a total of 306-8 in their 50 overs.

While all of the top seven batters in the order managed to pass 20 runs, only Towhid Hridoy was able to kick on as he finished top scorer with 74.

At one stage Bangladesh were 239-4 and set for a strong finish but the Aussie bowling attack did well to limit the Tigers to just 65 runs from their final 10 overs.

Adam Zampa finished with figures of 2-32, while Sean Abbott also bagged himself a brace of wickets for 61 runs.

Up steps Marsh

It was another outstanding batting performance from an Australian that stole the show at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, as Marsh smashed an unbeaten 177 to help seal the win.

Both David Warner (53) and Steve Smith (63) shared century stands with Marsh on his way to winning the man of the match.

The 32-year-old was delighted with the win and is looking forward to the showdown with South Africa in the semi-finals.

"It feels great, it's nice to finish off the group with another win and we're on to the semis. Hopefully that game will be a ripper,” Marsh said.

"I want to play with the same intent at number three as I do when I open and I lost that at times, so it was nice for that to come off today." 

Cummins happy with end to group stage

Marsh’s performance also earned him rave reviews from skipper Pat Cummins, who was delighted with how the all-rounder got after the Bangladeshi bowlers.

The captain now believes the coaches will have some selection dilemmas ahead of the semi-finals, with a number of players hitting top form.

“Great to get a win leading into the semis. It was such a good pitch and we backed ourselves to chase that score,” Cummins said.

"We have got a few selection headaches but that's a nice problem to have.

"Mitchell Marsh was incredible, he played beautifully and he is a scary prospect for bowlers." 

Proteas up next

South Africa finished their own group stage off with victory as they beat Afghanistan by five wickets at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.

The Proteas are 2.10 to win the semi-final on Thursday, while Cummins’ Australia are slight favourites at 1.72 for the victory.  

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