Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Pakistan have a disastrous show in the league stage of the ongoing ICC ODI World Cup 2023. Having lost three matches on the trot, the Green Army have their campaign in the mega event in disarray. However, they are still hopeful of a semifinal qualification which is hanging by a thread.

Pakistan will be hoping against the hope in their match against South Africa to pull off a miraculous turnaround and emulate their 1992 campaign.

Pakistan began their campaign impressively with wins against Netherlands and Sri Lanka. However, they were handed a reality check with a loss against arch-rival India. The Green Army then lost against Australia before suffering a humiliating defeat against minnows Afghanistan.

With the hat-trick of losses, Pakistan are now lagging in the sixth spot in the points table. Sri Lanka have given themselves fresh hope of reviving their World Cup campaign with a win against defending champions England.

Pakistan still have four matches left in the league stage to script a turnaround. They will play against  high-flying South Africa in Chennai on Friday before locking horns with Bangladesh in Kolkata on October 31. However, if they manage to win all their remaining games, a maximum of 12 points will not be enough for the team to make it through to the semifinal. They will depend on how the league stage unfolds for the remaining nine teams.

Pakistan’s biggest competitors for a semifinal berth are Australia and Sri Lanka. They have lost against Australia and won against Sri Lanka. Australia have two more points than Pakistan and they have picked up momentum after a hat-trick of wins. Pakistan would be hoping that the Aussies are beaten in at least one of their remaining four matches for the net run rate to come into play.

Pakistan’s current Net Run Rate (NRR) is of -0.400. They are below Sri Lanka (-0.205) and above Afghanistan (-0.969) despite all three having secured two wins in five matches so far.