LONDON: England, Australia and South Africa booked their places in the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup with a game to spare after convincing wins on Wednesday.
England continued their good form with a 75-run victory over New Zealand, while Australia bounced back from defeat against the hosts to score an eight-wicket win over India and South Africa defeated Sri Lanka, also by eight wickets.
England and Australia are now both on 10 points with England placed at the top of the points table owing to a better net run-rate. South Africa are third with nine points.
India and New Zealand are on eight and seven points respectively, with the winner of their last match on Saturday set to take the last semi-final berth.
Meg Lanning inspired defending champions Australia to victory with an excellent 79 not out with seven fours and one six, and that was after Megan Schutt and Ellyse Perry had taken two wickets each to restrict India to 226-7 from their 50 overs.
Lanning and Perry then saw Australia home with just under five overs to spare.
Natalie Sciver scored an excellent 129 from 111 balls as England beat New Zealand by 75 runs in Derby.
Sciver hit 11 fours on the way to her quick-fire century. Tammy Beaumont hit 93 as England scored 284 from their 50 overs.
Alex Hartley was the pick of the England bowlers as she took three for 44 as no New Zealand batter scored a half-century.
Captain Suzie Bates top scored with 44 as New Zealand were bowled out for 209.
“That knock rates pretty highly for me,” said Sciver. “When I went in (at 52 for three) and saw Tammy, we knew we needed a partnership.
In the other game, South Africa booked their place in the semi-final with a comfortable victory over Sri Lanka as Dane van Niekerk starred with the ball.
She took her third four-wicket haul as Sri Lanka was bowled out for 101.
And South Africa made that in just over 23 overs for the loss of just two wickets.
“I could get used to winning like this,” said Van Niekerk. “It shows the hard work the girls have put in and that it is paying off.”