Mohammed Shami India
Key strike: India's Mohammed Shami celebrates his dismissal of New Zealand captain Kane Williamson INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP News

India pacer Mohammed Shami bowled a historic spell and helped his side qualify for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 final on Wednesday.

Shami became the first Indian bowler to claim a seven-wicket haul in the One-Day Internationals (ODIs) as he finished with figures of 7 for 57 and saw India beat New Zealand in the first semi-final of World Cup 2023 at Mumbai's iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. Stuart Binny held the record for best ODI figures for India previously, with 6 for 4 against Bangladesh in 2014.

Shami's record-breaking spell

It also marked Shami's fourth five-wicket haul in the 50-over World Cup, the most by any bowler, surpassing Australia pacer Mitchell Starc's three five-fors. Shami bagged three five-wicket hauls in this tournament, the most in an edition of the ODI World Cup.

On Wednesday, the seven wickets against the Black Caps took Shami's wickets tally to 23 in the ongoing tournament in India. With one more match to go for Team India, Shami has a chance to equal or surpass Starc in the record for most wickets in a single Cricket World Cup. Starc achieved the record during the 2019 edition, where he finished with 27 scalps.

New Zealand's middle-order batter Daryl Mitchell's excellent effort of 119-ball 134 went in vain as the Black Caps, who made it to the final of the last two Cricket World Cups, fell short by 70 runs in the semi-final fixture against India.

After the game, Shami said that he was waiting for his turn in the 50-over format as he hadn't much played white-ball cricket in recent times.

"I had in mind, we talk about a lot of things like yorkers and slower balls. I tried to take wickets with the new ball. I try to take as many as I can with the new ball. I dropped the catch of Kane. I felt bad. I tried to take pace off. They were playing their shots. So, I took a chance. The wicket was good," Shami said in a post-match interview.

"There was the fear of dew. The grass was cut off nicely. The runs were enough. Had dew come in, things could have been bad. The slower balls might not have worked. I feel amazing. This is a huge platform," the fast bowler added.

After winning the coveted tournament in 2011, India lost in the semis in the following two editions in 2015 and 2019. Shami said the Men in Blue were now looking to cash in with the chance they have, especially with the tournament being played at home before adding: "We don't know when all of us will get a chance like this again."

Virat Kohli's memorable innings

On Wednesday, the occasion became a tad more special as India star Virat Kohli became the first-ever player to score 50 centuries in the ODI format, surpassing legendary Sachin Tendulkar's tally of 49 tons.

Kohli struck two sixes and nine fours in his knock of 117 off 113 balls. With that, the Delhi cricketer took his runs tally in the ongoing World Cup to 711, the most runs scored by any batter in a single edition of the men's ODI World Cup, pipping Tendulkar's 673 runs in 2003.

India, set to play in their third Cricket World Cup final, have qualified for the final without losing a game.

The second semi-final of World Cup 2023 is between five-time champions Australia and South Africa, who are still chasing their first title. The match is set to be played on Thursday at Eden Gardens in Kolkata. The winner of this fixture will face off against unbeaten India in the grand finale on Sunday (Nov. 19) at Ahmedabad's Narendra Modi Stadium, the largest cricket stadium in the world.