India is set to face Australia in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 final following Australia’s three-wicket victory over South Africa in the second semifinal at Kolkata’s Eden Gardens on Thursday.

The last encounter between India and Australia in a World Cup final occurred in 2003, with Australia emerging victorious by 125 runs and securing their third World Cup title. Australia continued its success by winning the subsequent 2007 edition.

The pursuit of its third World Cup title will take India to the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday. Their previous triumph was in 2011, defeating Sri Lanka in the final at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium. The inaugural World Cup win for India was in 1983 under the captaincy of Kapil Dev.

Top 3 Players for India

Virat Kohli

In the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, Virat Kohli has etched his name in history with an exceptional display of batting prowess. Scoring a staggering total of 711 runs in the tournament, Kohli has surpassed Sachin Tendulkar’s record from the 2003 World Cup to become the highest run-scorer in a single edition of the men’s ODI World Cup. Additionally, Kohli’s consistency is evident in his eight 50-plus scores, a feat that stands as the most by any batsman in a single edition of the ODI World Cup, surpassing the previous records held by Tendulkar in 2003 and Shakib Al Hasan in 2019, both with seven 50-plus scores each.

Kuldeep Yadav

In the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, Kuldeep Yadav made a significant mark during the semifinal clash between India and New Zealand, surpassing Harbhajan Singh’s wicket tally in ODI World Cups. The left-arm wrist-spinner secured his 21st World Cup wicket, thereby becoming India’s third-most successful spinner in the tournament’s history. His notable performance included dismissing Mark Chapman in the 44th over, ultimately finishing with figures of one for 55 in 10 overs. With 21 World Cup scalps in 17 matches, Kuldeep outshone Harbhajan, who had achieved 20 wickets in 21 games. This achievement adds another feather to India’s bowling arsenal in the ongoing competition. He will be a big threat for the Australia who are vulnerable against spinners in the middle overs. 

Mohammad Shami

In the 2023 World Cup, Mohammed Shami has been nothing short of exceptional for India. Displaying his veteran prowess, Shami played a pivotal role in keeping India in the game during the chase. His impactful four-wicket performance included crucial dismissals, such as having Devon Conway caught behind with the first ball and removing key players like Rachin Ravindra, Kane Williamson, Tom Latham, and Daryl Mitchell. Shami’s two-wicket burst in the 33rd over was particularly vital, and he capped off his remarkable performance with a record-breaking seven-wicket haul. Currently, Shami stands as the tournament’s leading wicket-taker, showcasing his immense contribution to India’s success. If Shami makes inroads with the new ball, it would set the tone for Indian spinners in the middle overs. 

Top 3 Players for Australia

David Warner

In the semifinal against South Africa at Eden Gardens in Kolkata, David Warner achieved a significant milestone by becoming the first Australian batsman to score 500 runs in two different ODI World Cup editions. His left-handed prowess was evident in accumulating 647 runs in the previous edition in 2019. Warner now joins an elite group, being only the third batter to surpass the 500-run mark in two World Cups, following in the footsteps of Indian legends Sachin Tendulkar (1996 and 2003) and Rohit Sharma (2019 and 2023). Other notable Australians to achieve this feat include Ricky Ponting (2007), Matthew Hayden (2007), and Aaron Finch (2019). If he gets going, it would be very difficult to stop him. He could captilise on Jadeja in the middle overs and can attack him. Hence, if he stays at the crease for a longer time, it could be danger signs for India.

Adam Zampa

Adam Zampa’s performance in the ICC World Cup 2023 has been nothing short of remarkable. Despite a challenging outing earlier in the series, where he conceded 113 runs, Zampa displayed resilience and a champion’s mentality. Embracing the role of the sole spinner for Australia, he has taken 22 wickets, becoming the tournament’s leading wicket-taker. Zampa’s unique strengths lie not in conventional skills but in his determination, strategic thinking, and the ability to adapt to opponents’ shots. His impactful contributions have played a crucial role in Australia’s success in the tournament. Zampa has dismissed Virat Kohli 8th time in ODIs and will look to scalp the big fish yet again. He also has a good record against Rohit Sharma and other Indian batters. 

Josh Hazlewood

Josh Hazlewood delivered a sensational performance in the ICC World Cup 2023 semifinal against South Africa, making a significant impact in the opening spell. Restricting the formidable South African top order, he claimed the crucial wickets of Quinton de Kock and Aiden Markram, conceding a mere 12 runs in his first six overs, with seven runs attributed to edges or false shots. Despite an unusually limited subsequent spell of two overs, Hazlewood’s 2-12 off eight overs stands as the most economical figures by an Australian male bowler in 17 years. His impactful contribution played a pivotal role in Australia’s victory. Josh Hazlewood has dismissed the Indian legend Virat Kohli for 5 times and again will be a itching to dismiss Kohli for the sixth time. He had a terrific match against India in the league stage of the World Cup and dismissed Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma. 

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By David

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