England vs Australia, ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Joe Root plays down 'spicy' nature of rivalry, says team upbeat with recent results

Joe Root says England gunning to be the first team to beat Australia in a World Cup semifinal, the team is not worried about Nathan Lyon's statements

Agence France-Presse, Jul 08, 2019 21:30:43 IST

Birmingham: Joe Root is determined that the 'spicy' nature of England's latest clash with Australia won't prove a distraction when the arch-rivals meet for a place in the World Cup final.

Tournament hosts England and reigning champions Australia will lock horns in Thursday's second semi-final at Edgbaston in a fixture that takes place just weeks before the start of the Ashes series between the old foes.

England vs Australia, ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Joe Root plays down spicy nature of rivalry, says team upbeat with recent results

Joe Root celebrates scoring a century during the Cricket World Cup match against Pakistan. AP

Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon has already done his best to unsettle England by insisting "it's their World Cup to lose." But Root, a member of the England side that lost to Australia in the group stage, told reporters at Edgbaston on Monday: "Nathan has a lot to say, a lot of the time, so you just take it with a pinch of salt."

"It might be a way of taking the pressure off himself and his team. I try not to get too involved, to be honest. I think there have been times within games when it has got a bit spicy and there have been a few exchanges on the field."

"But generally we will go about things in our own way and just get ourselves ready as best we can," added Root, who was involved in an infamous altercation with Australia's David Warner in a Birmingham bar during the 2013 Champions Trophy.

England have yet to win the World Cup and made the last of their three losing appearances in the final back in 1992, while five-time champions Australia have never lost a World Cup semi-final.

England, however, have won 10 of the last 12 ODI matches between the two sides. "There has been a lot made of the fear factor of playing against Australia, but I think this group of players over the last four years, their experiences against Australia are very positive," said Root.

"They have got a lot of success in the bank. We will be drawing on that confidence that over a long period of time now we have been successful against Australia and we should take that into Thursday.

"It's a great chance and a great week, it does feel special."

For all the latest news, opinions and analysis from ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, click here

Updated Date: Jul 08, 2019 21:30:43 IST

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3778 105
5 Australia 2640 98
6 Sri Lanka 3462 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 4756 97
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 India 8099 261
5 Australia 5471 261
6 New Zealand 4056 254