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IND Vs NZ, Semi-Final, ICC Cricket World Cup 2023: Mohammed Shami Makes Competition History As India Battle New Zealand For Final Spot

Mohammed Shami bounced back in style after dropping Kane Williamson at a crucial juncture of India's ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 semi-final against New Zealand by taking two wickets when his team needed him the most. Doing so, he broke the competition record for fastest till 50 scalps.

Mohammed Shami celebrates the wicket of Jonny Bairstow in Lucknow.
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Mohammed Shami became the fasted cricket to reach 50 wickets in the ICC Cricket World Cup when India played New Zealand in the semi-final of the 2023 edition. Shami, who had picked up two wickets earlier in the game, returned for another crucial spell midway, claiming the scalps of Kane Williamson and Tom Latham in the same over. The Indian pacer bounced back in style after dropping an easy catch to get the New Zealand captain out earlier in the game. (Match Blog | Scorecard | Preview | Key Battles)

India won the toss and chose to bat in the first semi-final of ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 in Mumbai on Wednesday, November 15. India are playing the same XI as in their previous game against Netherlands, and New Zealand too are unchanged. 

Happy to win the toss, India captain Rohit Sharma said: "It looks like a good pitch and on the slower side as well. I think it was way back in 2019 when we played that semi-final. New Zealand has been one of the most consistent teams over the years and it will be a good contest. I think it's a very important day, but you've to turn up on that particular day."

Kiwi skipper Kane Williamson said they would have had a bat first as well if they won the toss. "Obviously, a used surface and hopefully some dew in the evening. Looking forward to the challenge ahead. It should be a good game. Both teams have seen a variety of conditions and it's knockout cricket really," Williamson added.

India set New Zealand a target of 397 runs after a blistering first innings, courtesy of splendid tons by Virat Kohli and Shreyas Iyer. Kohli, especially, became the talk of the town as he surpassed Indian great Sachin Tendulkar to enter the annals of cricketing history with 50 ODI hundreds. 

India have had an unbeaten run in the tournament so far, notching up nine wins in the nine league games they have played. The Kiwis, on the other hand, stumbled mid-way in the group stage and scraped into the semi-finals, edging out Pakistan for the fourth spot with five wins out of nine games.

In a reprise of the 2019 ODI World Cup semi-final that ended in heartbreak for India, Rohit Sharma's men are taking on New Zealand in the first last-four clash of the 2023 ODI World Cup. India had narrowly lost the 2019 semi-final, with MS Dhoni's run-out imprinted in cricket lovers' memories. The hosts are aiming to leave that loss behind and gun for their third title in the showpiece event after the triumphs of 1983 and 2011. 

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