Pakistan lived to fight another day when they beat South Africa in a crucial encounter for the Babar Azam-led side. In a rain-curtailed match, Shadab Khan starred with both bat and ball as Pakistan claimed a dominant win. This was South Africa’s first loss of the tournament and in many ways, it has kept this group wide open.
Why is Pakistan’s win a double-edged sword for India?
For India, the equation is fairly simple. They need to win their last Super 12 match against Zimbabwe. If they win this game, they will top their group and could well take on England in the semi-finals. Also, if the game is washed out, Rohit Sharma and team will make it to the last four since they need just the solitary point.
Apart from this, Pakistan loses to Bangladesh and Netherlands defeat South Africa, India can also enter the semi-finals since they will have a better NRR even if they lose to Zimbabwe. As things stand right now, India look favourites to beat Zimbabwe and top the group and make it to the semi-finals.
What will be South Africa’s fate? What about Pakistan and Bangladesh?
For starters, Bangladesh need to beat Pakistan and then hope the match between South Africa and Netherlands is either washed out or the Dutch beat South Africa. South Africa, placed second in the group, need a win over the Netherlands in order to make it to the semi-finals.
Pakistan too would pray for either a washed-out game between South Africa and Netherlands, or a loss for the Proteas. They then need to defeat Bangladesh following which they can make it to the top 4 on account of having more wins than South Africa. The net run rate will not come into the picture.