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Windies knock out England

THE West Indies advanced to the Twenty20 World Cup semifinals after knocking out England in a rain-reduced Super Eights match at The Oval, London, on Monday.

Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul, their two most experienced batsmen, took the team to a new target of 80 from nine overs with five wickets and four balls to spare.

Sarwan, named man-of-the-match, scored 19 not out with three fours from nine balls and Chanderpaul 17 from 10.

Cheered on by a noisy home crowd, England reduced West Indies to 45 for five from 5.2 overs before the veterans took control.

"We couldn't have a better situation to have the two most experienced batsmen in," West Indies captain Chris Gayle said.

"Both of us are experienced players, we have been here before," Sarwan added.

England captain Paul Collingwood said his team thought it had the game won as the wickets tumbled. "But it's not easy defending a target like that from eight overs."

The host nation lost its way after Kevin Pietersen was dismissed for 31 from 19 balls, finishing its 20 overs on 161 for six.

Pietersen was in sublime form, cracking his first ball from Kieron Pollard to the mid-wicket boundary and flicking his second wristily to leg for another four.

He guided an on-drive off Jerome Taylor past the bowler for four and appeared poised for a match-winning innings before lofting Lendl Simmons to mid-wicket. Andre Fletcher steadied himself, held the ball safely and hurled it high in the air.

Score a boundary

England did not score a boundary from when Owais Shah (18) hit a six in the 11th over until Stuart Broad cracked a four and a six off the final two balls of the innings. Ravi Bopara top-scored with 55.

Dwayne Bravo took 2-30 as England squandered a good start.

"They lost crucial wickets at crucial times," Gayle said. "They lacked hitters down the order."

"We're happy to be in the semifinals," he added. "Our batting has been a disaster here in England and we wanted to give our supporters something to cheer about.

"It was great to see them cheering in the stand. It's been a long hard summer for us but to be in the semifinal is brilliant."

Collingwood drew comfort from the way his side tried to defend a low target. "I'm very proud of the guys and the way they fought through the tournament," he said.


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