|HOME | WORLD CUP 99 | INDIA | NEWS | REPORT|
|June 2, 1999||
The semi-final equation
Three thumping wins and two narrow defeats. That's what it has taken India to scramble into the Super Six at the expense of England. However, no one can doubt that India has played the most attractive and entertaining cricket in the Tournament thus far.
The four centuries that have been scored so far all belong to Indian batsmen, with Saurav Ganguly's 97 against South Africa being the next highest score. The only 300-plus scores in the group matches have again been made by India. And, to top it all, Dravid and Ganguly have shared a record 319-run partnership.
Yet, despite of these stunning achievements, India faces an uphill battle hereafter. According to tournament rules, India carries forward no points and a negligibly positive net run-rate into the second phase. This is because carry forward benefits are only points gained against other qualifiers in the same group. By contrast, Zimbabwe carries forward the maximum of four points, putting it practically on the doorstep of a semi-final berth.
Each team plays three matches in the Super Six. The points tally at the conclusion of this phase decides the four semi-finalists. In case of equality of points, the following tie-breakers apply to decide the winner.
1. The most wins in all the matches throughout the competition against other Super Six qualifiers (this provision is to reduce possibilities of a team qualifying on account of free points gained through abandoned matches). 2. When two teams have equal points and an equal number of wins, the team which won the match between them (either in the Super Six or qualifying stages) will be placed higher. 3. When more than two teams have equal points and equal wins, the teams which was the winner of most matches played between these teams (in both the Super Six or qualifying stages) will be placed higher. 4. If still equal, the team with the higher run-rate against other Super Six qualifiers (in both groups and Super Six matches) will be placed higher. 5. If still equal, then the team with the higher number of wickets taken per ball against the other Super Six team (in both groups and the Super Six matches) will be placed higher. 6. In the unlikely event of teams not be separated by the aforesaid methods, a draw of lots will held to break the deadlock. In the light of the tie-breaker rules, consider the following Scenario: India wins two matches in the Super Six (against Australia and New Zealand), New Zealand wins one (against Zimbabwe) and Zimbabwe loses all three. Carry forward points have been India 0, New Zealand 2 and Zimbabwe 4. So, at the conclusion of the Super Six stage all teams will be tied on four points. Of these three teams, two will qualify for the semi-final.
The first three tie-break rules do not yield a winner, so the matter comes down to run-rate. India's handsome net run-rate acheived against Sri Lanka, England and Kenya does not help here, since these three teams are not in the Super Six. The tie-breaker is on run-rate against other Super Six qualifiers.
Two wins in the Super Six might, therefore, help India in gaining a semi-final slot. On the other hand, it might not, particularly if the third match results in a hefty loss destroying the net run-rate. So the only way India can make sure of its presence in the semi-finals is by winning all three Super Six matches. A tough task, but not impossible for a team that has the potential, is speaking and demonstrating the will to win.
Tell us what you think of this story
SHOPPING HOME | BOOK SHOP | MUSIC SHOP | HOTEL RESERVATIONS
EDUCATION | PERSONAL HOMEPAGES | FREE EMAIL | FEEDBACK