India Meets Pakistan in World Cup Semi-Finals
Pakistan essentially packed their bags and left for home as their hopes of qualifying for the semifinals of the Cricket World Cup 2023 dwindled after losing four straight games. Pakistan defeated the Netherlands and Sri Lanka to start the tournament, but their campaign took a turn for the worse as they lost consecutively to Australia, Afghanistan, South Africa, and India. After that, Babar Azam and company bounced back, defeating both Bangladesh and New Zealand in consecutive games to partially reinvigorate their campaign.
These two teams have already faced off in the group stages of the current ICC World Cup 2023, with India winning in Ahmedabad with a commanding performance. The potential that these formidable teams will face each other again in the semifinals or perhaps in the much-awaited Final, however, keeps the excitement alive.
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In Bengaluru, the Pakistani team’s ‘Qudrat Ka Nizam’ (power of nature) came to full play as rain and fearless batting from Fakhar Zaman enabled them to defeat a confident New Zealand side.
From intent to impact! 🔝— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) November 4, 2023
🗣️ Join the conversation as @FakharZamanLive and @babarazam258 dish out the details of their match-winning partnership against New Zealand 🏏#NZvPAK | #CWC23 | #DattKePakistani pic.twitter.com/yMqWAuH3CG
From now on, the semi-final between India and Pakistan is underway. It would have been absurd to say this a week ago, but not today. Pakistan still needs a lot of outcomes to work in its favour, though.
How India-Pakistan can meet in the Semifinals?
For Pakistan to get 10 points, they must win their next game. If they win, they might move up to third place in the standings—but only if Australia and New Zealand lose their remaining games. Afghanistan also needs to lose against South Africa and overcome Australia by a close margin.
India needs to place second in the table in order to play Pakistan. This is only possible if they lose to South Africa and are unable to score more runs than South Africa in their game against the Netherlands. It’s expected that South Africa will win against Afghanistan and that India will beat the Netherlands.
For both teams, this situation offers a more practical future. South Africa needs to lose to India, which is presently leading the group, in order for them to maintain their top spot. Pakistan, on the other side, must win in order to take fourth place.
Pakistan will surely compete at the esteemed Eden Gardens in Kolkata if they get to the semifinals. Semifinal 2 is traditionally held here, with the second and third-place teams competing. Pakistan will play in Mumbai instead of the last four, though, if they are successful.
Here’s what should happen in the coming days to see an India Vs Pakistan semi-final in World Cup 2023:
Pakistan must beat England in the match, preferably with a better Net Run Rate (NRR). To finish with 10 points.
Afghanistan must lose their next two matches to Australia and South Africa. They will finish with just 8 points.
The Netherlands must lose to India and England. They will finish with 8 points.
New Zealand must lose to Sri Lanka. They will finish with just 8 points.
Australia and South Africa look set to finish as no 2 or 3 in the table if all these results occur.
The number 1 team in the table will be India and the number 4 will be Pakistan. The number 1 plays number 4 in semis and number 2 with 3. If India plays Pakistan in the semifinals, the match will be played in Kolkata. Pakistan will not play any match in Mumbai for political reasons.
Pakistan still has many challenges and a difficult path to the semifinals. Their primary goal should be defeating England. The good news for them is that this is England’s lowest point in ODIs in a very long time. After eight games, Jos Buttler’s team has only managed one victory, making this an abject campaign for the reigning champions. To advance to the semifinals, Babar Azam’s team will be motivated to defeat them and do it decisively.