Steve Smith (centre) and James Faulkner (right) inspired Australia to a 21-run victory over Pakistan ©Getty Images

Australia produced a superb performance with bat and ball to eliminate Pakistan from the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Twenty20 as they claimed a 21-run victory at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali.

The Australians won the toss and elected to bat as captain Steve Smith justified his own decision with a vital contribution of 61 from 43 balls to help elevate his side to a commanding 193-4.

Pakistan’s pursuit of their highest-ever T20 chase began well thanks to Khalid Latif’s innings of 46 before James Faulkner did the damage with the ball, finishing with figures of 5-27, including four crucial wickets in six deliveries towards the end of the contest.

The paceman removed Latif and Imad Wasim in the 18th over and then accounted for Sarfraz Ahmed and Wahab Riaz at the death as Pakistan fell comfortably short of their required total.

The defeat sends Pakistan, winners of the 2009 ICC World Twenty20 tournament in England, crashing out of the competition at the first hurdle.

Australia’s victory, their second in a row following defeat to rivals New Zealand in their opener, sets up a vital match with India in the final group match.

The winner of the encounter in Mohali on Sunday (March 27) will clinch the second place available in the last four of the competition from Group 2 behind the Black Caps, who have already secured their progression to the semi-finals.

“We haven't quite played to our potential in the first two games,” Smith said.

“Today was quite a clinical performance and I'm really proud of the boys.

"We just have to keep on winning.

“There's three more games if we want to win the World Cup.

“India will be tough and hopefully we can keep playing some good cricket and give them a run for their money.”

Marlon Samuels top scored for West Indies as he side beat South Africa by three wickets to reach the last four
Marlon Samuels top scored for West Indies as he side beat South Africa by three wickets to reach the last four ©Getty Images

In the other match to take place today, the West Indies sealed their place in the semi-finals by beating South Africa by three wickets at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Nagpur.

The South Africans, who still have a chance of qualifying for the semi-finals, lost opener Hashim Amla early which set the tone for a dysfunctional display at the crease as wickets tumbled.

Quinton De Kock’s 46 helped them record a respectable 122-8,  though the West Indies would have been comfortable pursuing a target of 123.

Their response got off to the worst possible start as Chris Gayle, considered the best player in the world in the shortest format of the game, was bowled by Kagiso Rabada for just four runs.

Gayle’s early dismissal provided a test for the West Indies batsmen and they rather limped to the required total, with Marlon Samules top scoring on 43.

The men’s tournament continues tomorrow as England face Sri Lanka in Delhi Group 1 at the Feroz Shah Kotla in New Delhi and New Zealand entertain Bangladesh in a dead rubber at Eden Gardens in Kolkata.

The women’s competition resumes as Australia clash with Ireland in New Delhi before New Zealand take on South Africa at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore.