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Group 1 qualification scenarios: England flying but not yet assured of semi-finals spot

Australia's poor NRR could put them in trouble if they don't win both their remaining games

S Rajesh
S Rajesh
Justin Langer's expression tells thing are not going Australia's way, Australia vs England, T20 World Cup, Group 1, Dubai, October 30, 2021

Australia's net run rate took a battering following their defeat to England  •  ICC/Getty Images

With each team having played three matches in Group 1, here is a look at what they need to do to qualify for the semi-finals.
Played: 3, Points: 6, NRR: 3.948, Remaining matches: vs Sri Lanka, South Africa
England have been in outstanding form so far, winning each of their three matches with plenty to spare, but they aren't quite assured of a semi-final place yet. If they lose their last two matches - as ridiculous as that sounds - and remain on six points, it is possible for both Australia and South Africa to leapfrog them and finish on eight. One more win should suffice, though: even though they could still be tied on eight with Australia and South Africa, their net run rate should be enough to take them through.
South Africa
Played: 3, Points: 4, NRR: 0.210, Remaining matches: vs Bangladesh, England
South Africa have won two and lost one, and one of their remaining games is against the form team of their group. If they beat Bangladesh and lose to England, they will be at the mercy of other results as both England and Australia can move up to eight points. Even with four wins, it could come down to NRR if Australia win their last two, and if England beat Sri Lanka.
Played: 3, Points: 4, NRR: -0.627, Remaining matches: vs Bangladesh, West Indies
Australia's net run rate has taken a battering after their defeat against England, but despite this huge loss, they are reasonably placed with two wins in three games. Their last two games are against the bottom two teams in the group, but neither can be taken lightly. Australia will want to win both, because it is possible for England and South Africa to get up to eight points.
Sri Lanka
Played: 3, Points: 2, NRR: -0.350, Remaining matches: vs England, West Indies
Sri Lanka will have to win their last two matches and then hope other results go their way. Their best-case scenario will be if both Australia and South Africa lose their two remaining matches. In that case, England (8 points) and Sri Lanka (6) will qualify, with all the other teams stuck on four. There is a possibility of five teams being on four points each if England finish on 10, but that is not a fight Sri Lanka will want to get into.
West Indies
Played: 3, Points: 2, NRR: -1.598, Remaining matches: vs Sri Lanka, Australia
West Indies' NRR is the worst among the six teams in Group 1, so they will not want any scenarios where run rates come into play (unless they achieve huge wins in their last two games). Like Sri Lanka, their best-case scenario will be if Australia and South Africa lose their two remaining matches and stay on four points. Then, West Indies can qualify with six if they win their two remaining matches.
Played: 3, Points: 0, NRR: -1.069, Remaining matches: vs South Africa, Australia
If England win all their matches and other teams distribute their wins evenly, it is still possible that five teams will be on four points each, fighting for the second semi-final spot. Bangladesh, though, will also have to win big to improve their NRR, which is currently languishing at -1.069.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. @rajeshstats