Cricket: India chase target of 329 runs to beat Australia in World Cup semi-final

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Steve Smith scored a brilliant century to lay a solid platform but Australia lost a string of wickets in the second half of their innings to finish with 328 for seven in the World Cup semi-final against India on Thursday.

On a good Sydney Cricket Ground pitch in perfect weather conditions, the reigning champions will fancy their chances of overhauling the target of 329 and taking their place in Sunday's final against New Zealand in Melbourne.

Smith (105) came back to torment India in a partnership of 182 with opener Aaron Finch (81) to lead Australia to a comfortable position with close to 200 runs on the board, nine wickets in hand and over 15 overs to bat.

With Umesh Yadav (4-72) to the fore, however, India struck back to remove the power-hitters in Australia's middle order.

"I think it's a good total, we're going to have to bowl and field well though," said Smith.