Australia overcame South Africa by five runs in the second semi-final of the ICC Women's T20 World Cup at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday, winning via the Duckworth/Lewis method. The Meg Lanning-led side held their nerves in a rain-curtailed match and it paid off as the Aussies qualified for their third straight T20 World Cup final. They will now be defending their title against a strong Indian team at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Thursday.
After being asked to bat first, Australia got to a respectable total of 134/5 in their 20 overs riding on skipper Meg Lanning's unbeaten run-a-ball 49. During the innings break it appeared that Australia's title defence would come to an abrupt end as it was raining very heavily. South Africa seemed to be in the driver's seat as they had won all their group games while the Aussies had lost their tournament opener against India.
However, no such thing happened and South Africa were given a revised target of 98 runs in 13 overs. The South African batters did offer a lot of resistance but failed to gather momentum due to the steep asking rate and in the end, they fell short as Australia sealed a narrow 5-run win (DLS) method. Megan Schutt was the pick of the bowlers for Australia with figures of 2/17 in her three overs at an economy rate of 5.67.
Earlier, India Women qualified for the semi-final and were drawn to face off against England. India had never won a semi-final clash before in seven attempts but progressed through to the final on Thursday as the match was abandoned due to rain. By finishing at the top of Group A, India qualified for the finals while England had to bow out after they finished second in Group B.