The competition for the final two spots in the men’s ODI World Cup has heated up since South Africa and India have already advanced to the semifinals. Australia is closing in on the third spot, and Afghanistan, Pakistan, and New Zealand are vying for the last spot.
New Zealand remains fourth on the points table with 8 points from their loss to Pakistan and a net run rate of +0.398. In order to reach 10 points, they must win their final match against Sri Lanka. Additionally, they would wish for Pakistan to lose their upcoming match against England.
Pakistan defeated New Zealand by 21 runs with DLS method in a game that was interrupted by rain at M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru to secure their spot in the 2023 World Cup. For the Men in Green, who still have hope in the competition, this was a huge victory. Unfortunately for the Kiwis, though, they lost their fourth straight game in the tournament despite amassing an enormous 401. Despite their unfortunate loss, the Kiwis can still advance to the semi-final.
New Zealand has eight points overall and a net run rate of +0.398, which keeps them in fourth place of the points table. In order to reach 10 points, they must win their final match against Sri Lanka. Additionally, they would wish for Pakistan to lose their upcoming match against England. But Pakistan lags behind with NRR of 0.036, so New Zealand would be ahead even if Pakistan wins their subsequent match, albeit not by much.
Afghanistan, however, might also be a threat to New Zealand. They have eight points as well, but unlike Pakistan and the Kiwis, they still have a game left to play. The Afghans will advance to the semi-final and eliminate both Pakistan and New Zealand if they win their final two matches against Australia and South Africa.
If all three teams are tied at 10 points after Afghanistan wins one of the two games and both New Zealand and Pakistan win their respective final league matches, then NRR will come into play. Among the three, New Zealand will advance with the best NRR.
In short, the ideal scenario for New Zealand would be a victory over Sri Lanka, two more losses for Afghanistan, and a victory over Pakistan by England. This will get New Zealand to 10 points and set them up for the knockouts.