The ongoing ICC T20I World Cup has thrown a lot of excitement the way of the followers with both groups producing enticing storylines in their own right.
Group 1, which includes the likes of New Zealand, Australia, England, Sri Lanka, Ireland and, Afghanistan, has provided nerve-biting action which has drawn out till the very end of the league stages of the coveted ICC campaign.
With a semi-final spot for the Kiwis already sealed and Afghanistan out of contention, the runner-up position in the group is being battled out between England, Sri Lanka and Australia, and the margins are so fine that the team advancing could be decided on the basis of net run rate if the points are tied at the end of the group phase.
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With the stakes as high as they are, an umpiring gaffe lead to a five-ball over in Australia’s game against Afghanistan in a game where each run and delivery could make a difference in the fortunes of the qualification-chasing teams.
During the fourth over of the game between the hosts and already ousted Afghanistan, Australians Mitchell Marsh and David Warner were at the crease when an over consisting of just five deliveries was bowled as the umpire failed to spot the error.
The batsmen rotated the strike with a couple of singles in the opening two deliveries of the over before Marsh’s boundary over backward point in the third ball. Marsh and Warner demonstrated some good running between the wickets in the fourth delivery, aided by some sloppy work on the field from the Afghani men. The fifth ball of the over was a dot before the umpire signalled the end of the over.
With the group table in such a precarious position, the game is a must-win match for the Australians, who not only need to bag all points on offer against the touring Afghanistani unit but also need to do so by a big margin to give themself an edge over Sri Lanka and England in terms of the net run rate.
Australia ended up winning the game by five runs and moved to the second position in the table behind having completed all five of their group stage matches.
Sri Lanka take on England in an all-important game on Saturday, which would see England sail through to the knockout stages of the tournament on net run rate if they manage to beat the Asia Cup champions.
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