NEW DELHI: With three semi-final spots taken by India, South Africa and Australia in the ongoing ICC World Cup, it’s an intense battle for the last spot as three teams enter the home straight still in position to grab it and avoid elimination.
India lead the table with 16 points from their unbeaten streak of eight matches, while South Africa are No. 2 with 12 points and Australia placed third with 12 points as well but behind the Proteas on net run rate (NRR).

New Zealand (4th), Pakistan (5th) and Afghanistan (6th) all have eight points with one match left to play, and are separated by NRR.

Here are the scenarios for the three teams to qualify for the semi-finals:

  • New Zealand play a struggling Sri Lanka in their last league match in Bengaluru on Thursday and have the best NRR of 0.398 among the three teams left in the fray. But with heavy rains forecast on match day, their hopes also depend on the weather. They must win to stay in the competition.
  • Pakistan (NRR 0.036) take on England in Kolkata on Saturday while Afghanistan (NRR 0.038) take on South Africa in Ahmedabad on Friday. They too need to win their respective matches and keep an eye on NRR.
  • An India vs Pakistan semi-final clash on Thursday at the Eden Gardens is still possible. For this to happen, Pakistan need to win big and will have the advantage of playing after the New Zealand and Afghanistan games.

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