Browse News

News by Competition News by Topics News by County Teams News by International Teams

Join TwelfthMan now!

In profile: Champions Trophy semi-finalists

Eight teams have been whittled down to four in the Champions Trophy.

In this guide,'s Chris Devine analyses each of the nations still in with a chance of emerging victorious at Edgbaston on Sunday.

The semi-finals take place tomorrow and on Thursday, England and South Africa meeting at The Oval prior to India’s clash with Sri Lanka at Cardiff Wales Stadium.


Tournament so far

  • Defeated Australia by 48 runs at Edgbaston
  • Lost to Sri Lanka by seven wickets at The Oval
  • Beat New Zealand by 10 runs at Cardiff Wales Stadium

After seeing his side confirm their semi-final spot with victory over New Zealand, Alastair Cook expressed satisfaction with England's group-stage performances.

The host nation's bowling unit was highly impressive in the matches against Australia and New Zealand, while Cook, Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott have all made substantial contributions from the top of the order.

There remains room for improvement, however. A target of 294 was comfortably hunted down by Sri Lanka at The Oval and the dangerous duo of Eoin Morgan and Jos Buttler have still to make their mark on the competition. Should they do so, England's chances of claiming a first global 50-over title will be significantly boosted.

Key Man

Balancing a limited-overs side can be tricky, so England will be delighted with the form shown by Ravi Bopara in this tournament.

The 28-year-old has already shone on two occasions with the bat, following a valuable unbeaten 46 against Australia with a blistering 13-ball 33 in a losing cause against Sri Lanka.

In addition, Bopara has helped to fulfil the all-important 'fifth bowler' role with his naggingly accurate medium-pace, claiming three wickets while maintaining a respectable economy rate.

Leading run-scorer: Alastair Cook

England’s captain has led from the front with two half-centuries, including a 47-ball 64 in the truncated meeting with New Zealand.

Leading wicket-taker: James Anderson

The spearhead of the England attack, Anderson already has eight scalps and was at his brilliant best against the Black Caps.



Tournament so far

  • Lost to India by 26 runs at Cardiff Wales Stadium
  • Defeated Pakistan by 67 runs at Edgbaston
  • Tied with West Indies on the Duckworth/Lewis method at Cardiff Wales Stadium

Hampered by the absence of Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis and Morne Morkel, together with an injury to attack leader Dale Steyn, the Proteas have yet to display their best form.

However, they will surely take great heart from the way they have bounced back from an opening defeat at the hands of India.

In that match, South Africa's bowlers - minus Steyn - came in for heavy punishment. Yet Chris Morris, Morkel's replacement, has made an encouraging impression and Steyn returned for the dramatic rain-affected tie against West Indies.

Even without Smith and Kallis, a batting line-up containing the likes of Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers and JP Duminy cannot be underestimated.

Key Man

Although South Africa have many bowling options, much is likely to depend on whether Steyn can operate at full capacity as the tournament reaches its conclusion.

The world's number one Test bowler strained his side in a pre-tournament warm-up game against Pakistan, but was able to play a significant role in his country's final group fixture, in which he picked up two wickets.

If Steyn is firing on all cylinders tomorrow, there is unlikely to be a bigger threat to England's hopes of reaching the final.

Leading run-scorer: AB de Villiers

Another captain setting a good example with his performances, de Villiers passed 30 in all three group games and top-scored for South Africa against India with 70 from 71 balls.

Leading wicket-taker: Ryan McLaren

McLaren is unlikely to inspire fear in many batsmen. However, the former Kent and Middlesex all-rounder is a canny operator and boasts eight wickets at 15 in the tournament.



Tournament so far

The form team of the event to date, India have looked mightily impressive in emerging from Group B with a perfect record.

Their run-scoring prowess was on show in the triumphs over South Africa and West Indies, which each featured centuries from opener Shikhar Dhawan, while wickets have been shared around a bowling group that appears high on confidence.

As defending world champions, India also have recent experience of landing a major 50-over crown and will fancy their chances of securing another piece of silverware.

Key Man

Although Dhawan has demonstrated wonderful recent form, Virat Kohli remains the most prized Indian wicket for opposition bowlers.

A batsman of exceptional class, with the ability to score freely through elegant strokeplay rather than agricultural slogging, Kohli has yet to make a substantial score in this tournament but is rarely kept quiet for long.

Leading run-scorer: Shikhar Dhawan

A flamboyant strokemaker, Dhawan has already made an indelible mark on the Champions Trophy, with two hundreds each compiled in quick time. He also hit 48 in the rain-affected clash with Pakistan, taking his tally for the tournament to 264 runs.

Leading wicket-taker: Ravindra Jadeja

England need no reminding of Jadeja's effectiveness and the wily left-arm spinner has already helped himself to nine scalps from three outings. He also boasts the only five-wicket haul in the tournament to date, having returned 5-36 against West Indies.



Tournament so far

Arguably the most unpredictable of the four remaining teams, Sri Lanka's efforts in the group phase can best be described as hit-and-miss.

A woeful batting display against New Zealand proved too much to overcome in Sri Lanka's first game, despite the best efforts of Lasith Malinga, but Kumar Sangakkara's tremendous unbeaten century subsequently underpinned a clinical chase of 294 to defeat England.

Angelo Mathews' men then overcame Australia to book their place in the last four and will now seek revenge over India, the country that denied them World Cup glory in 2011.

Key Men

When it comes to assessing Sri Lanka's most influential players, it seems unfair to separate Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene.

The vastly experienced duo rank among the best batsmen of their generation and have each demonstrated their enduring class in recent days with innings of elegance and poise.

Prior to his match-winning 134 not out against England, Sangakkara played a lone hand in compiling 68 versus New Zealand, while Jayawardene has improved with each knock - registering scores of four, 42 and 84 not out.

Leading run-scorer: Kumar Sangakkara

Only Dhawan has scored more runs in this tournament than Sangakkara, who reached three figures for the 15th time in ODIs when putting England to the sword last week.

Leading wicket-taker: Lasith Malinga

One of the most entertaining players in the world, Malinga's mastery of yorkers is unrivalled in the modern game. He has seven wickets so far, four coming against New Zealand.

iPad and mobile apps

Get live scores, news, videos with ECB Cricket Live for iPad and ECB Cricket app for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Nokia

Follow us on Twitter

Stay up to date and fully informed wherever you are by following ECB_cricket on Twitter

Watch county highlights

Watch highlights from NatWest T20 Blast, County Championship, Royal London One-Day Cup action on