To go past New Zealand and make a place for themselves in the World Cup semi-finals, Pakistan have ahead of them, the challenge of beating Bangladesh by 311 runs or even more, on Friday.
With nine points to their credit after eight matches, Pakistan can only level New Zealand’s tally of 11 points and primarily because of the pounding margin of defeat against West Indies, they need nothing less than a miracle.
However, the daunting task seems next to impossible especially because Bangladesh have not only defeated teams like West Indies and South Africa in the tournament but they have also made India and Australia work hard for their wins.
Pakistan’s 2019 World Cup campaign had eerie similarities with their 1992 World Cup campaign, however England’s successive wins against India and New Zealand have almost drawn curtains to Pakistan’s World Cup hopes this year. While New Zealand’s net run rate is +0.175, Pakistan stand at a dismal -0.792.
Zero chance if they field first
For Pakistan, to try and aim for a semi-final finish is going to be extremely difficult. Here is the mathematics: If Bangladesh bats first in the match, then even without a ball being bowled, Pakistan will be ruled out of the tournament. Another equation states that Pakistan must bat first, score 400 runs and then dismiss Bangladesh for under 84 runs.
This implies that for Pakistan to qualify they need to achieve a feat which, leave aside World Cup cricket, has never been achieved in the history of ODI cricket.
Pakistan will need to beat Bangladesh by a minimum of 311 runs. Can Pakistan make history?
Qualification Equations for Pakistan (Batting first)
– Post a target of 350 runs and dismiss Bangladesh for less than 38 runs (Shakib alone has scored at least 41 in each of his World Cup innings)
– Score 400 runs and dismiss Bangladesh for less than 84 runs
– Score 450 runs and dismiss Bangladesh for less than 129 runs
– It is worth noting that Pakistan have surpassed the 350 runs mark only ten times in more than 920 One Day International (ODI) matches since 1973.
World Record is of 290 runs
In ODI Cricket history, the biggest margin for victory by runs is 290 runs. In July 2008, New Zealand had posted a target of 403 runs and bundled out Ireland to register this win. In World Cup history, the record belongs to Australia who had won the match by 275 runs. As far as Pakistan are concerned, their biggest win is by 255 runs which again came against Ireland in 2016.