Can Pakistan still qualify for T20 World Cup 2022 semi-finals?

A look at the permutations in Group 2 with two games left as Babar Azam's side face an early exit

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Pakistan were in the peculiar position on Sunday of requiring a favour from India to help their chances of progressing in the T20 World Cup.

Having won a T20I in Australia for the first time when they beat the Netherlands, a similar result for India in the second game of the double-header in Perth might have helped their neighbours.

As it turned out, South Africa claimed a five-wicket win, to make their place in the semi-final highly likely.

It means India, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and Pakistan are all vying for one spot – with the latter’s chances looking increasingly remote.

1) South Africa

Remaining fixtures: v Pakistan on Thursday / v Netherlands on Sunday

With a three-point advantage over Pakistan, the Proteas can afford to lose to them on Thursday and still finish above them by beating winless Netherlands on the final day.

If they do drop two points, they are still well placed to advance. India and Bangladesh are each just a point behind them, but play each other next so only one can possibly leapfrog South Africa if they do slip up.

Zimbabwe could match South Africa’s points tally if they win both their remaining games and South Africa win just one of their two. But the Proteas also hold a substantial net run-rate advantage at present.

South Africa are in a strong position to advance to the T20 World Cup semi-finals. Getty

2) India

Remaining fixtures: v Bangladesh on Wednesday / v Zimbabwe on Sunday

If India beat both Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, they could top the group if South Africa lose to either Pakistan or the Netherlands. Either way, two wins would guarantee a place in the last four.

Beat Bangladesh and lose to Zimbabwe, then Zimbabwe could beat them to second if they also beat the Netherlands.

Lose to Bangladesh and beat Zimbabwe, then their neighbours could beat them to second place. Both those scenarios assume South Africa win their remaining matches and top the group.

Weather could also be a consideration. Rain is forecast for Adelaide on Wednesday, where India face Bangladesh.

India can still top the group if they win both remaining fixtures and South Africa lose one of theirs. Getty

3) Bangladesh

Remaining fixtures: v India on Wednesday / v Pakistan on Sunday

Bangladesh will go through if they beat both of their Asian neighbours in their remaining games.

A win against India and a loss against Pakistan might not be enough. Their net run-rate is inferior to India’s, so it would mean India would need to also lose to Zimbabwe for Bangladesh to finish above them.

In the unlikely event South Africa lose both their fixtures, a win would be enough to take Bangladesh through, assuming India do not slip up against Zimbabwe.

If Bangladesh beat both India and Pakistan, they will advance to the semi-finals. EPA

4) Zimbabwe

Remaining fixtures: v Netherlands on Wednesday / v India on Sunday

Zimbabwe have won three matches at this World Cup, having had to advance from a separate qualifying tournament altogether just to make it to Australia.

They have given the competition some of its most vivid memories, yet their participation looks likely to fall short of the semi-finals.

If they beat the Netherlands next time out, they will get to five points. They would then need to shock India in their final group match to stand a chance of advancing.

It would rely on Bangladesh winning just one of their remaining matches.

Zimbabwe will need to win their last two matches - including beating India - to continue their T20 World Cup journey. Getty

5) Pakistan

Remaining fixtures: v South Africa on Thursday / v Bangladesh on Sunday

Pakistan could win both their remaining matches and still go out. The best they can get to, with two wins, is six points. South Africa would get to seven if they beat the Netherlands in their final game, thus taking one of the qualifying places.

Assuming rain stays away and they get a game in, the winner of India against Bangladesh will get to six points.

In that scenario, if India won against Bangladesh and lost to Zimbabwe, and tied on six points with Pakistan, the tiebreaker would be net run-rate. India’s is superior at present.

It is possible the three Asian teams could finish level on six points.

Pakistan would have no chance of progressing unless they win both remaining games.

Pakistan need to win their last two games and hope other results work in their favour to progress to the semi-finals. AFP
Updated: October 31, 2022, 8:43 AM