Men’s ODI WC: Semifinals as good as decided after New Zealand thrash Sri Lanka

Bengaluru:  New Zealand’s five-wicket win over Sri Lanka with as many as 160 balls to spare has boosted their Net Run Rate (NRR) up to +0.743 and almost assured them of a semi-final spot in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.

New Zealand have all but sealed their spot in the semifinals of the World Cup, joining the likes of India, South Africa and Australia after a five-wicket win over Sri Lanka in Bengaluru on Thursday.

New Zealand’s emphatic victory over Sri Lanka means the make-up of the semi-final stage of the event can only change if something dramatic happens.

India are assured of finishing in first place in the points table with South Africa and Australia, placed second and third respectively, and will compete in the semifinal on November 16 at Eden Gardens. Kolkata.

The Black Caps’ victory over Sri Lanka means they sit in the box seat to finish fourth and are the most likely opponents for India, although Pakistan still have an outside chance of claiming the final place in the knockout stages with a big win over England in their final group match.

Pakistan’s equation to make the semifinals after New Zealand’s huge win is a near-impossible one: if they bat first, they need to win by a margin of 287 runs at least and if they are chasing, they need to dismiss England for 50 runs and chase the target in two overs or 100 runs in three overs.

All of these appear highly improbable.

Afghanistan’s odds are even lesser given that their net run rate is further lower than Pakistan’s. They face South Africa on Friday in Ahmedabad.

If the standings stay as they are now then India will take on New Zealand in Mumbai on November 15, with South Africa and Australia meeting on the next day in Kolkata.

Should Pakistan manage to overtake New Zealand and finish in fourth, then India’s clash with their archrival will take place in Kolkata on Thursday and the Proteas’ clash with the Aussies will switch to Mumbai a day earlier, said a report on the ICC’s official website.


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