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Who'll qualify for semis? ICC World T20 to witness intense Super 10 finish

Rohan Raj | Updated on: 14 February 2017, 6:01 IST

After witnessing some notable individual performances and shocking results, the Super 10 stage of the coveted ICC World T20 is headed for an intense finish with just four teams moving ahead and qualifying for the knock-out stages.

World T20 Groups_Screengrab

In a span of nearly two weeks, the tournament has witnessed the rise of New Zealand and West Indies, who currently lead their respective groups with four points each. The 2009 champions Pakistan and Faf du Plessis' South Africa are temporarily placed second in Group 2 and Group 1, respectively.

Also read: Watch India's epic reply to Dhoni's beheaded morphed photo

Hosts India find themselves at the fourth position, just ahead of Bangladesh, in Group 2 with only a mathematical chance to qualify for the tournament semi-finals. Their dream of staying alive in the tournament is undoubtedly threatened by Australia, who currently sit on the third position in Group 2.

As the Super 10 stage of the ICC World T20 reaches a thrilling end, here's a look at the potential teams who can qualify for the semis:

West Indies

West Indies World T20_AFP Photo

Photo: AFP

The 2012 champions, West Indies, have enjoyed a sensational form to emerge on top in Group 1. Riding on Chris Gayle's 47-ball 100, the Darren Sammy brigade produced a power-packed performance against England to win their opening game by six wickets. Sri Lanka became their second victim after the Windies secured a seven-wicket win in Bengaluru.

The team has two games left in the Super 10 stage, a crunch clash against South Africa and one against Afghanistan. Though the spirited minnows might not pose any challenge, West Indies' clash against the Proteas holds the key where a loss might change their fortunes in the tournament.

Matches left: South Africa (25 March) and Afghanistan (27 March)

South Africa

South Africa World T20_ICC/Twitter

Photo: Twitter/ICC

One of the title contenders this year, the all-round South African brigade suffered a shocking defeat at the hands of England where they failed to defend an imposing total of 229 runs. The Faf du Plessis side secured their first points after beating Afghanistan by 37 runs in their second game.

Currently placed second in Group 1, the Proteas have just two games at their disposal to boost their chances for the semis. Their next match against West Indies could either make or break their World T20 campaign. In case of a loss against the Windies, South Africa will have to hope that England lose to both Afghanistan and Sri Lanka.

Matches left: West Indies (25 March) and Sri Lanka (28 March)

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka Asia Cup_Munir uz Zaman/AFP

Photo: Munir uz Zaman/AFP

The defending champions have clearly suffered in the absence of their star players in this year's edition of ICC World T20. Despite winning their opening game against Afghanistan, the Lankans find themselves in a vulnerable position after losing their second match to West Indies by seven wickets.

Angelo Mathews' men are currently on the third spot, but a loss to either South Africa or England in their upcoming matches could surely send them packing. The Lankans will have to win both their games to stay in contention for the semi-finals spot.

Matches left: England (26 March) and South Africa (28 March)

England

england.jpg

File Photo

After being outdone by West Indies in their opening match, the 2010 winners got their campaign back on track with a stunning two-wicket victory over South Africa. Joe Root's knock of 83 runs and Jason Roy's 16-ball 43 helped England chase a mammoth 229-run total.

The Eoin Morgan's men find themselves at the fourth spot in Group 1 with two matches still to be played. Despite winning both of their games against Sri Lanka and Afghanistan, England will have to hope that South Africa lose to West Indies in order to progress in the tournament.

Matches left: Afghanistan (23 March) and Sri Lanka (26 March)

Afghanistan

Afghanistan World T20_AFP

Photo: AFP

The spirited Afghans performed brilliantly to qualify for the Super 10 stage, but their losses to Sri Lanka and South Africa have got them on the verge of elimination. Afghanistan, currently placed fifth in Group 1, can dent England's chances if they win against Eoin Morgan's men. England's loss to Afghanistan will surely make things easier for both South Africa and Sri Lanka.

Matches left: England (23 March) and West Indies (27 March)

New Zealand

New Zealand cricket_Marty Melville/AFP

Photo: Marty Melville/AFP

The 2015 World Cup finalists have shocked everyone by pulling off comprehensive wins against strong-rivals like India and Australia. Their 47-run win against India and eight-run triumph over Australia propelled them to the top spot with four points in Group 2.

A victory against either Pakistan or Bangladesh will seal their spot for the tournament semi-finals. However, a loss against both the teams could see them crashing out of the ICC World T20.

Matches left: Pakistan (22 March) and Bangladesh (26 March)

Pakistan

Pakistan Asia Cup_Twitter

Photo: Twitter/ICC

The 2009 champions began their World T20 campaign with a comprehensive 55-run win over Bangladesh. However, their jinx with India came back to haunt them in the second game where they lost to MS Dhoni's men by six wickets in Kolkata.

Currently placed second in Group 2, Pakistan face an uphill task in their remaining two matches. The Afridi side will have to beat New Zealand today and then trump Australia to keep their hopes alive. However, winning their remaining matches, alone, will not be enough for Pakistan to book the semis berth. They will have to hope that the Aussies beat India by a small margin to progress in the tournament.

Matches left: New Zealand (22 March) and Australia (25 March)

Australia

Australian cricket team_AFP

Photo: AFP

The 2015 World Cup winners got off to a shocking start in the ICC World T20 after suffering a narrow eight-run win against New Zealand in their opening match. But, the Steve Smith brigade turned their campaign around with a three-wicket win over Bangladesh.

Sitting on the third spot in Group 2, Australia will have to win both their remaining matches against India and Pakistan. After beating these two cricket giants, the Aussies will have to hope that Bangladesh beat India in order to move ahead in the tournament.

Matches left: Pakistan (25 March) and India (27 March)

India

MS Dhoni Lead_Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Touted as favourites to win the ICC World T20, the 2007 champions were stunned in their opening match by New Zealand at a packed VCA stadium in Nagpur. If the loss was not enough to spoil their chances, the loss against the Kiwis also affected India's Net Run-Rate (NRR) which could determine their fate in the tournament later.

Team India kept their campaign alive by beating arch-rivals Pakistan in Kolkata and now find themselves at the fourth spot in Group 2. Their upcoming matches against Bangladesh and Australia hold the key to their progress in the tournament. The Dhoni brigade cannot afford to lose either of the games, while an improved NRR will also boost their chances.

Matches left: Bangladesh (23 March) and Australia (27 March)

Bangladesh

Bangladesh cricket team_Munir Uz Zaman/AFP

Photo: Munir uz Zaman/AFP

Having reached the Asia Cup final last month, the Bangla tigers were expected to threaten the stronger opponents in the ICC World T20. However, consecutive losses to Pakistan and Australia have almost got them eliminated from the tournament.

Placed fifth in Group 2, Bangladesh might not be able to enter the semis but it can surely spoil India's chances by beating them tomorrow. If the Mashrafe Mortaza side manages to beat New Zealand in their last match, then the Kiwis will have to rely on other teams to slip up.

Matches left: India (23 March) and New Zealand (26 March)

First published: 22 March 2016, 5:50 IST
 
Rohan Raj @ro4an_raj

After a poor stint in gully-cricket quashed his hopes of turning pro, Rohan moved away from the playing field and began criticising those who were still on it. Football eases his mind and watching City paint Manchester blue is his elusive dream. When not talking, thinking or dreaming about sports, Rohan can be found listening to EDM or watching movies. A sports correspondent at Catch News, he has previously worked with Hindustan Times, Daily Bhaskar and India Today.

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