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March 21, 2007
Sri Lanka's 198-run win against Bangladesh has ensured them a place in the Super 8, while it has made things relatively simpler for India too - all they need to do is to win their last league match. Against a marauding Sri Lankan side, though, Rahul Dravid and co. will have their hands full.
The good news for India, however, is that Sri Lanka's margin of victory today means that for Bangladesh to make it to the Super Eight, Sri Lanka must beat India. (A washout will do nicely too, but with a reserve day in hand, it's unlikely that a decisive result won't be reached.) As the points table shows, Bangladesh have a net run rate of -2.002. Regardless of the margin by which they beat Bermuda (if they lose to Bermuda, they're surely out of the tournament), their NRR won't improve enough to go beyond India's 2.51. Here are a couple of scenarios from each of the two matches remaining in the group which explain why.
India versus Sri Lanka
Scenario 1 Sri Lanka bat first, score 260, and India win with one over to spare
Sri Lanka's NRR will drop from 4.59 to 2.99, while India's will drop marginally to 1.72.
Scenario 2 India bat first, score 265, and win by 2 runs
Sri Lanka's NRR will be 2.98, while India's will be 1.69.
For Bangladesh to then make it to the Super 8, they'll need to go past India's NRR. However, as the two scenarios below show, the gap between the two NRRs is just too large.
Bangladesh versus Bermuda
Scenario 1 Bangladesh score 300, and restrict Bermuda to 120 to win by 180 runs
Despite the huge margin of victory, Bangladesh's NRR will only improve to -0.08.
Scenario 2 Bermuda are bundled out for 120, and Bangladesh wipe off the target in 15 overs
In this case, due to the fact that Bangladesh will only bat 15 overs, their NRR will only increase to -0.7.
In either case, Bangladesh's NRR will be well below India's which means the only chance for them to get into the Super 8 is if Sri Lanka get past India. Given Sri Lanka's awesome form in their two matches so far, though, it will need a brave man to bet against that happening.
Plays of the day from the IPL match between Chennai Super Kings and Kings XI Punjab in Abu Dhabi