England reaches Champions Trophy Semis

Doug Mendoza
June 11, 2017

Jos Buttler's quickfire 61* proved to be pivotal in the end as England thumped New Zealand by 87 runs to become the first team to qualify for the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy 2017 in Cardiff on Tuesday.

On a cold, blustery and sometimes wet day in Cardiff, England had set a total of 310, Joe Root top-scoring with 64 from 65 balls and Jos Buttler making a rapid unbeaten 61.

England, who were soundly beaten by the Black Caps at the 2015 World Cup, dismissed New Zealand for 223 to win by 87 runs as Liam Plunkett claimed 4-55 and fellow seamer Jake Ball and leg-spinner Adil Rashid snared two wickets apiece.

"Yes, he is in great form but we can not focus only on Williamson", said Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza at his pre-match press conference.

New Zealand will also be looking for England to do them a favour, as an Australia win would send the Kiwis out. "So pretty average. So I thought the bowlers today as a collective unit were brilliant, really", Morgan was quoted as saying by the official website of the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Wednesday.

Morgan added: "With the inconsistent bounce in the pitch, I genuinely thought that if we took one wicket, we would take two".

"They always are going into a white-ball tournament".

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It therefore needed Wood and Co to step up, and Morgan said: 'Guys like him are so valuable to the team - and you can't leave any of our bowlers out.

Morgan confirmed England will not be letting up at the weekend.

"We're staying true to what we believe in and what we've achieved over the last couple of years".

"We all know the importance of getting wickets early in the innings and putting the team under pressure", he said.

"We now know we have qualified for the semi-finals but we want to be going there on the back of a win and we will be desperate to do that on Saturday", said Buttler.

The No.3 accumulated a solid fifty from 66 balls without ever dominating and was undone by a snorter from Mark Wood which bounced off his gloves to the keeper. Sometimes these things heal quicker, sometimes they take longer, so we have to play it by ear. He's playing fantastically. On a personal note, I'm over the moon for him. "It should be a very good encounter".

Williamson, fined 40 percent of his match fee for New Zealand's slow over rate, accepted his side had been well beaten.

Other reports by GizPress

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