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Each team's road to the semis after big India and New Zealand wins

There are five matches to go in the Super 12 stage of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup but only one team has a guaranteed spot in the semi-finals.

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Pakistan, with their win over Namibia on Tuesday, ensured that they will be in the final four, leaving only one open spot in Group 2.

New Zealand, India and Afghanistan are still mathematically in the running for that semi-final place in what could be a thrilling conclusion to the Super 12 stage. But it’s all getting very tight in the race for that second qualification place, with Scotland and Namibia the only teams out of contention.

In Group 1, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and West Indies are all out, while England are almost certain to go through after four wins from four. Australia’s dominant win over Bangladesh puts them in a strong position to qualify, thanks to the massive boost to their net run rate which went from -0.627 to +1.031.

After West Indies’ loss to Sri Lanka, South Africa and Australia are the two other teams still in Group 1 qualification contention after England.

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While their hopes of progressing at the current tournament have been dashed, Scotland, Namibia, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh all have something to play for with automatic qualification to the Super 12 stage of the next T20 World Cup up for grabs.

Following Friday's results, we look at what each team needs to do to reach the next stage of the tournament.

GROUP 1

Minimum points to reach semi-finals: Six points

Maximum points needed to reach semi-finals: 10 points

ENGLAND

First – Eight points – four matches - NRR of 3.183

Remaining opponents: South Africa

What they need to do to reach the semi-finals: They’re basically there

England have all but locked down their spot in the final four with eight points from four games.

While both Australia and South Africa can still join England on eight points, not only would they each have to win their remaining games – for the Proteas that includes a match against England – they would need to win significantly enough to overturn England’s massive NRR lead.

A victory over South Africa in their final group game would take NRR out of the equation and cement their already stone-tight grip on top spot.

In short: They’re virtually already into the semi-finals.

Video cwc19 01 Nov 21
M29: England v Sri Lanka | Innings highlights | T20 World Cup
Watch the 1st Inning Highlights from England vs. Sri Lanka, 01/11/2021

AUSTRALIA

Second – Six points – four matches – NRR of +1.031

Remaining opponents: West Indies

What they need to reach the semi-finals: Win and hope

A thumping win over Bangladesh has nullified the effects of the drubbing they received at the hands of England, but their fate is still not completely in their hands.

Currently second in the table on NRR, Australia face West Indies in their final game of the Super 12.

A win would not guarantee Australia a place in the semi-finals if South Africa manage to beat England by a margin that would take their net run rate above Australia’s.

Similarly, even if Australia lose against West Indies, they could still qualify as long as South Africa also lose their game against England.

In short: Beat West Indies in the final game and hope England beat South Africa or South Africa don’t beat England by a big margin.

Video cwc19 04 Nov 21
Match Highlights: Australia v Bangladesh

SOUTH AFRICA

Third –  Six points – Four games – NRR of 0.742

Remaining opponents:  England

What they need to reach the semi-finals: Win and hope

South Africa have bounced back well since their opening defeat against Australia but their fate, just like the Aussies, is not entirely in their own hands.

Australia leapfrogged the Proteas to the second spot in the standings on net run rate, thanks to their massive win over Bangladesh.

Their scenario is very similar to that of Australia - a win in the final game doesn’t guarantee them a spot in the final four but neither would a loss completely rule them out.

In both cases, it would come down to the result of Australia vs West Indies and who beat who by what margin.

In short: Beat England by a big enough margin to go over Australia on NRR or hope West Indies beat Australia by a margin that reduces Australia's NRR 

SRI LANKA

Fourth – four points – five matches – NRR of -0.269

Though Sri Lanka were out of the semi-final reckoning before their game against West Indies, the win puts them in contention for automatic qualification to the Super 12 stage of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia.

From the 12 automatic qualifiers for next year’s tournament, the winner and runner up of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 plus the next six highest-ranked teams - as of November 15 - will go straight through to the Super 12 stage of Australia 2022.   

Sri Lanka sit 10th in the T20I rankings right now, but could yet enter the Super 12 2022 automatic qualification spots if results go their way.

Video cwc19 04 Nov 21
Match Highlights: West Indies v Sri Lanka

WEST INDIES

Fifth – Two points – four games – NRR of -1.557.

Remaining opponents: Australia

Defending champions West Indies’ campaign got off to the roughest of starts against England, with their NRR decimated after being bowled out for 55. Their hopes were hurt further in an eight-wicket defeat against South Africa before they revived their campaign with a three-run win over Bangladesh.

Needing to win the two games against Sri Lanka and Australia to qualify for the semi-finals, West Indies faltered at the first hurdle as they lost to the Islanders by 20 runs.

However, the game between Australia and West Indies will not be a dead rubber, given there’s a lot on the line for both teams. While the Aussies will be vying for a place in the semi-finals, West Indies, currently eighth in the ICC T20 Team Rankings, will be fighting for Super 12 qualification for next year’s World Cup.

BANGLADESH

Sixth – zero points – six matches – NRR of -2.383

Bangladesh were out of contention before the game against Australia but the manner in which they lost would have been demoralising for the whole team.

They go back with zero wins in the Super 12 stage.

The defeat means it will be a tense wait to see if they need to begin next year's ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 campaign in the tournament's First Round.

GROUP 2

Minimum points to reach semi-finals: Four points
Maximum points required to reach semi-finals: Eight points

PAKISTAN

First – Eight points – Four games – NRR of 1.065

Remaining opponents: Scotland

What they need to do: One win to lock down top spot

Alongside England, Pakistan have looked like the team to beat at this tournament, defeating India by 10 wickets before impressive wins over New Zealand, Afghanistan and Namibia.

And their victory over Namibia locked in their spot in the semi-finals.

If New Zealand beat Afghanistan on Sunday they’ll need to win their final match, later that same day, to guarantee a first-place finish to avoid a likely semi-final against world No.1 England.

In short: One more win to go into the semi-finals unbeaten.

Video cwc19 02 Nov 21
Match Highlights: Pakistan v Namibia

NEW ZEALAND

Second – Six points – four games – NRR of 1.277

Remaining opponents: Afghanistan

What they need to do:  Beat Afghanistan

If New Zealand beat Afghanistan on Sunday they will be guaranteed a spot in the next stage.

But the run-rate equation means that they will be level on points with Afghanistan if they lose that match and will be below their opponents on NRR.

In that circumstance they could finish as low as fourth in the group, with India playing Namibia on Monday.

In short: Winning their final match seals a semi-final spot

Video cwc19 31 Oct 21
Match Highlights: India v New Zealand

INDIA

Third – Four points – three games – NRR of 1.619

Remaining opponents: Namibia

What they need to do: Beat Namibia and hope New Zealand lose to Afghanistan

India found themselves on the brink of elimination after just two matches following heavy defeats against Pakistan and New Zealand.

And if the Kiwis beat Afghanistan in their final game then there is nothing that Virat Kohli's side can do.

However, the crushing nature of their wins over Afghanistan and Scotland have given India a lifeline. They now have the best NRR in the group so could well go through if Afghanistan beat New Zealand on Sunday.

In those circumstances, India would need a win over Namibia in the final game of the Super 12 stage on Monday to qualify. Depending on the margin of Afghanistan's win on Sunday there could also be a NRR requirement, but it is likely to be an attainable one.

In short: India need a favour from Afghanistan against New Zealand

Video Match Preview 02 Nov 21
M33: India v Afghanistan | Match Preview | T20 World Cup

 

AFGHANISTAN

Fourth – Four points – four games – NRR of 1.481

Remaining opponents: New Zealand

What they need to do: Beat New Zealand and finish with a superior NRR to India

Afghanistan’s heavy loss to India has made their position in Group 2 far less stable.

They now must beat New Zealand in their final group game to qualify, and even then a victory in that match may not be sufficient, particularly as India now have the best NRR in the group.

Lose to New Zealand and Afghanistan are certainly out. But it will all come down to NRR if they beat the Black Caps on Sunday.

India's huge win over Scotland has hurt Afghanistan, as does the scheduling, which sees India play Namibia in the final game of the Super 12 stage knowing exactly what they need to do in order to finish in second place in the group.

It's a big ask, but a win and a sizeable NRR increase against New Zealand could be enough.

In short: Beat New Zealand and beat them well, then hope.

NAMIBIA

Fifth – Two points – Four games – NRR of -1.851

Remaining opponents: India

What they need to do: Enjoy their final match of the tournament

Having registered a famous win over Scotland in their first-ever Super 12 match, Namibia now face one final opportunity to beat one of the Test playing nations when they face India in the final game of the group stage.

A win over India could see Namibia catapult up the ICC Men's T20I rankings, though it's unlikely that it will take them high enough to be automatic Super 12 qualifiers in the 2022 edition.

In short: One last hit.

SCOTLAND

Sixth – Zero points – four games – NRR of -3.494

Remaining opponents: Pakistan

What they need to do: Have fun and fly home

A heavy first-up defeat against Afghanistan before losses to Namibia and New Zealand left Scotland with no chance of progressing from the Super 12. And the crushing loss to India was a further disappointment.

In terms of the 2022 tournament, Scotland's ICC T20I ranking at 14th looks unlikely to improve enough to avoid the First Round stage in Australia.

But their qualification for this Super 12 stage does mean that the Scots are guaranteed to feature at the next World Cup, and a famous win over Pakistan would be the perfect precursor of things to come.

In short: Pride to play for.

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