The Indian cricket team has already cemented their spot in the semi-finals of the 2023 Cricket World Cup through an impressive undefeated streak in the tournament. In contrast, their long-standing rivals, Pakistan, have had a mixed run with four wins and four losses in their eight matches. While India’s upcoming fixture against the Netherlands is essentially a formality, Pakistan’s match against England holds great significance in determining their fate in the competition. Despite the divergent situations of these traditional adversaries, there remains a substantial possibility of them crossing paths in the World Cup semi-finals.
India’s position at the top of the final points table is guaranteed, regardless of the result of their match against the Netherlands. Having accumulated 16 points from 8 matches, India leads the rankings, with second-placed South Africa amassing 14 points.
To secure the 4th position in the Points Table, Pakistan must secure victory in their final match and depend on Afghanistan to achieve a favorable outcome against New Zealand. Both Pakistan and New Zealand have one match left in the tournament, while Afghanistan will confront South Africa in their last game.
In the event of Afghanistan’s loss to South Africa, and provided Pakistan and New Zealand both triumph in their respective matches, the race for the 4th position will be determined by Net Run Rate (NRR). However, if Afghanistan prevails over South Africa, all three teams will find themselves with 10 points (assuming Pakistan and New Zealand emerge victorious in their final matches), and the decision for the 4th spot will hinge on NRR.
Should Pakistan emerge victorious in their match and both New Zealand and Afghanistan falter in their concluding group-stage fixtures, the squad led by Babar Azam will secure the 4th place. This sets the stage for a semi-final clash with India. Per the tournament format, the team that finishes first in the group stage faces the team that finishes 4th in the semi-finals. Consequently, an India-Pakistan encounter is poised to captivate cricket enthusiasts once again in the 2023 World Cup.