Australia absorb mishaps knowing World Cup demons are England’s | Geoff Lemon

Everything has fallen into place for Aaron Finch’s side and history only adds to their serenity before Thursday’s semi-final Australia are a team who should look rattled. They are playing the hosts and favourites in a semi‑final at a supposed fortress. Awaiting in the World Cup final at Lord’s are New Zealand, who should have beaten them at the same venue a couple of weeks ago but for a rearguard from the first drop, Usman Khawaja. Now Khawaja is gone with a hamstring strain and, Shaun Marsh, who was his backup, has a broken wrist from a training mishap. Marcus Stoinis has more torn muscles than a butcher’s shop but the all-rounder is supposedly going to play. The squad have two new players and a third in the wings. But Australia don’t look rattled at all. They look, to take the captain Aaron Finch’s description of his coach Justin Langer, “quite chilled out and zen”. Not just because of their barefoot wanderings around cricket grounds that attracted perhaps an outsized amount of mirth from local media but because they’ve been able to absorb their various mishaps with barely a tremor, and because their campaign is one in which things have largely fallen happily into place. Continue reading...

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