India stormed into the Champions Trophy semi-finals after thrashing a woeful South Africa by eight wickets at The Oval. Bidding to reach their third final in tournament history, the defending champions will likely face Bangladesh on Thursday [15 June] after successfully chasing down a pitiful 192 to win after Shikhar Dhawan  and Virat Kohli [76 not out] made half-centuries in a second-wicket stand of 128.
World number one-ranked South Africa produced a tame batting display to allow India simple passage to the knockout phase. The Proteas started slowly and after losing AB de Villiers to a crazy run out - one of three during a disjointed innings - lost their last eight wickets for 51 runs to finish on 191 all out.
Rohit Sharma fell cheaply but Dhawan and Kohli picked up the baton and Yuvraj Singh's cameo also helped India stroll home with 12.1 overs to spare and send South Africa crashing out. Edgbaston will play host to the all-sub-continent last-four clash, with Pakistan and Sri Lanka duelling on Monday [12 June] in the final Group B match for the right to face favourites England in Cardiff.
The first of two virtual quarter-finals saw the reigning champions face the winners from 1998, with the victor all-but assured of facing Bangladesh in the second semi-final in Birmingham. Neither side had been overly convincing in their opening two games and both required a major improvement to reach the knockout phase.
Despite the glorious conditions in South London, India chose to bowl in the fifth match of the tournament to be played at The Oval. Ravi Ashwin returned to the side in the only change made from the loss to Sri Lanka, while Andile Phehlukwayo replaced Wayne Parnell.
Though the overhead conditions were conducive for batting, South Africa retreated into their shell from the outset; preferring to play out the early overs instead of capitalising on the power play. Just 76 runs were on the board in the 18th over when India finally struck to break the resistance when the out-of-sorts Hashim Amla  edged Ashwin behind.
Quinton de Kock  was at least providing some substance to his display, going to his 14th half-century before a mid-judged sweep saw him bowled by a quicker ball from Ravi Jadeja. The Indian bowlers were now full of confidence and that translated to their fielding as South Africa fell apart.
De Villiers  followed up his maiden one-day golden duck against Pakistan by being run-out by Hardik Pandya, a dismissal which triggered a epic collapse. New man David Miller  followed in comical circumstances in the next over as he and Faf du Plessis ended up at the same end as the India pressure intensified.
Du Plessis  lasted just four more overs before being emphatically bowled by Pandya before Chris Morris  was unable to get on top of Jasprit Bumrah and looped a catch up to Bhuvneshwar Kumar. At six wickets down South African's cautious start was coming back to haunt them and they again returned to survival mode - but with little success.
Bumrah picked up his second wicket after a successful review, trapping Phehlukwayo lbw for just four. Kumar got in the act with two dismissals in as many balls after he caught the edges of Kagiso Rabada  and Morne Morkel . The climax to the innings continued the embarrassing narrative of the South Africa display as Imran Tahir  was run out despite a Kohli misfield. They were bowled out with an insipid total on the board and five-and-a-half overs unused.
South Africa's ignominy was completed as India went about a routine run-chase in an attacking fashion which was in stark contrast to their own. Sharma  edged Morkel to De Kock but Dhawan went on the offensive after his century against Sri Lanka.
Kohli had a point to prove after a duck in that game and after going over the top for a maximum he pushed the ball down the ground to illuminate the Indian chase. The skipper and Dhawan surpassed 50 for the second wicket for the 13th time in ODIs as they kept Rabada and Morkel at bay.
Dhawan secured his 50 before Kohli followed suit with Morris taking plenty of punishment from the pair, verging on the disrespectful, as India cruised to the brink of victory. The opener fell short of successive tons after being caught by Du Plessis, ending a century partnership with Kohli, but Yuvraj [23 not out] secured the win with a crushing six which kept the 2013 champions' hopes of retaining their title alive.