ICC World T20 | Who will qualify from Group 2 ft. India, South Africa, Pakistan

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The World T20 Super 12s finds itself engulfed in an intense battle between all the teams contending for semi-final spots

(ICC)

ICC World T20 | Who will qualify from Group 2 ft. India, South Africa, Pakistan

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Gantavya Adukia

11/01/2022

Australia has proven to be a brilliant host so far, apart from all the rain, with its pitches providing an equal contest between bat and ball. The underdogs have capitalized on this to provide a host of memorable upsets making the ongoing group stages one of the most thrilling in World T20 history.

It is that time of the tournament again, where every cricket fan imbibes the spirit of a mathematics expert and whips out all sorts of hypothetical calculations to figure out which teams will make it to the unforgiving knockout stages. The ICC World T20 2022 so far has been the hotbed of upsets, featuring more of them than any other major tournament in recent memory, thus creating exciting dynamics in both Super 12 groups where the fate of each time dangles by a fine thread. No match is irrelevant or a dead rubber anymore, as all the titans clash it out to further their quest of conquering T20 cricket’s greatest prize.

Group 2 of the marquee event, comprising India, Pakistan, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, and the Netherlands, has had its own share of upsets as well. Still, rain has played an even more significant role in dictating the permutations for teams aiming to finish in the top two spots. India’s victory over Pakistan in the opener was the headline result while Zimbabwe shocked the world with a thrilling one-wicket victory of their own over the Men in Green. South Africa will be ruing their fortune having been stranded with a no-result against their African rivals after being an eyelash away from victory while the Netherlands are still seeking to open their account Down Under. 

As things stand, South Africa lead with five points, closely trailed by India and Bangladesh tallying four points apiece. Zimbabwe lie in the fourth spot with three points as Pakistan play catch-up, reeling on a paltry two points. Thus, with two games to go for each side, all teams except the Dutch are still in contention for a semi-final spot, making it only natural to dig into the remaining fixtures and map out scenarios under which each outfit can book its berth in the final four.

India’s qualification scenarios

India’s wins over Pakistan and the Netherlands have put their fate in their own hands. All they need is to win both the remaining games against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh to take their points tally to eight and thus secure qualification. In fact, they can go through to the semi-finals even after losing either of the two encounters as long as they manage to have a better net run rate than Pakistan at the end of it all. Lastly, two losses will confirm India’s exit, owing to Bangladesh leapfrogging them, from the Super 12 stage for the second year in a row. 

South Africa qualification scenarios

The Proteas are currently leading the group with five points and need just a win against either Pakistan or the Netherlands to secure a semi-finals berth. If the outfit manages to triumph in both clashes, they’ll be guaranteed the top spot with a points tally of 9.

Things, however, get interesting in the scenario that they come away winless from the remaining fixtures where they might be pipped by Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, or Pakistan. The Tigers will need just a solitary victory in the remaining two games to trump the Proteas while Pakistan simply need to ensure victory against Bangladesh to get to a tally of six points and overtake South Africa. Zimbabwe, meanwhile, could eliminate their continental rivals by defeating the Netherlands by a huge margin and keeping their NRR loss against India to a minimum.

Pakistan qualification scenarios 

The agenda for Pakistan is straightforward. Two wins in two and their hopes remain alive, anything else and its curtains. However, even if they win their games, they will need other teams to play their part in order to advance into the final four. They’ll need a mighty favour from the Dutch as a win for them against the Proteas will provide the Men in Green the best shot to qualify. They will also have to continue their newfound support for the Men in Blue as India running the table, against Zimbabwe and Bangladesh will offer them the cleanest route to making the knockouts along with their neighbours. 

Zimbabwe qualification scenarios

Much like Pakistan, Zimbabwe have a clear plan in sight – win both their games and then pray for the other matches to go their way. Even so, they will need to rely on South Africa and Bangladesh to lose one of their games each to ensure their own tally of seven points is enough to keep a place in the top two. It must be noted that Zimbabwe play India at the Melbourne Cricket Ground where two matches have already been washed out and if their encounter suffers from the same fate, the African outfit will have to ensure they have a better run rate than Pakistan.

Bangladesh qualification scenarios

Unlike the aforementioned two, Bangladesh will ensure qualification if they win the remaining games regardless of what goes down in other encounters. Their points tally will shoot up to eight and considering one of the games is against India itself, they will be beyond catching reach of all their rivals. However, a loss against India or Pakistan will also pretty much guarantee elimination for the Tigers since even in the best possible sequence of results in other games, it will come down to NRR between Pakistan or India, and Bangladesh. Presently, Bangladesh have a net run rate of -1.533, only slightly better than the Netherlands.

Netherlands qualification scenarios

Even though it may seem the Dutch are still in with a shot considering their tally can go up to four points, the same as the currently second-ranked India, the reality is the Netherlands have already been mathematically eliminated. India and Bangladesh are yet to play a head-to-head encounter and the winner will go up to six points; even if the match gets washed out, a point each means the two rivals will be on five points apiece which is still unattainable for the European outfit.

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