Australia has been knocked out of their home Twenty20 World Cup after England claimed a final-over win against Sri Lanka at the SCG.
Needing a victory to qualify for the semi-finals ahead of Australia, England chased down Sri Lanka's 8-142 with four wickets and two balls to spare on Saturday to go into the final four.
'UNACCEPTABLE': Australia dudded in all-time cricket World Cup blunder
After Adil Rashid's 1-16 proved crucial with the ball, Alex Hales hit eight boundaries in his 47 from 30 to set up the chase before a mid-innings collapse of 5-36.
But Ben Stokes was able to save the day for England, with his unbeaten 42 from 36 balls keeping them in control late.
Australian fans were watching on hoping Stokes didn't once again break Aussie hearts in the final over, but the allrounder showed poise when it mattered most.
The equation eventually got down to five runs from the final Lahiru Kumara over, before Chris Woakes cut the third-last ball for four with only two runs needed.
The win propelled England into a likely semi-final against India in Adelaide on Thursday, gaining some revenge on Australia after the 4-0 Ashes trouncing last summer.
"It's obviously nice," Rashid said.
"We're here playing against Australia as well in their home conditions.
"They are a world-class side. It's unfortunate for them they got knocked out this early."
Regardless, the pressure will mount on Australia after being knocked out before the group stages of their home World Cup.
Despite winning the previous edition of the tournament, Australia entered their home World Cup in patchy form having lost to England and India in warm-up series'.
The host nation will now watch on as England and New Zealand advance from group 1.
— England's Barmy Army (@TheBarmyArmy) November 5, 2022
If there is one player England would want batting in a tense situation, it would be Ben Stokes. A feeling of certainty around him.
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) November 5, 2022
The crisis man, The man big stages, Ben Stokes arrived for England in the must win game.
42* runs from 36 balls when their middle order struggled in the run chase. pic.twitter.com/Jd7cuVPASZ
— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) November 5, 2022
Ben Stokes’ best T20 innings for England: calm, clinical, focused.
— Simon Mann (@Cricket_Mann) November 5, 2022
For all the talk about Ben Stokes’ place in this England side, there is no cricketer in the world I’d rather have in that situation in a knockout game
Throw in bowling and fielding and he’s been good value this World Cup. Importance will grow if Malan is out of the tournament
— Will Macpherson (@willis_macp) November 5, 2022
Australia out of T20 World Cup
In reality, Australia's tournament was doomed from the moment they suffered an 89-run loss to New Zealand in their opening game.
Needing results to go in their favour ever since, Australia's match against England was washed out and they failed to make up the net run-rate deficit to reach the finals.
Wins over Ireland and Afghanistan to round out the group stage were not big enough, with the four-run victory over the latter on Friday night highlighting the hosts' scratchy form.
The result marks only the fourth time in the past 30 years that Australia have not progressed into the semi-finals of a World Cup in any format.
Sri Lanka offered some early hope to Australian fans when they reached 1-54 from the six-over powerplay, with England facing the prospect of needing to become the first team to pull off a successful chase at the SCG in this tournament.
Opener Nissanka Pathum led the attack, smashing five sixes in his 67 from 45 balls as he clipped deliveries off his pads and over the legside at will while also uppercutting Mark Wood over third man.
But when he was caught trying to take on Rashid, Sri Lanka struggled to find any momentum as they lost 5-25 in the final five overs.
England were then able to take control with Hales and Jos Buttler's 75-run opening stand from 7.2 overs, before Stokes rescued England after their own collapse.
"We were nervous, we would like to have won a lot easier than that," Rashid said.
"But that's T20 cricket. We kept our composure at the end."
The result means New Zealand top group 1 and will face South Africa in the other semi-final at the SCG on Wednesday, assuming the Proteas are able to beat the Netherlands.
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