"Overwhelming favourites, now gasping to stay alive in a World Cup so many thought was theirs to own!" commentator Harsha Bhogle tweeted after hosts England lost on Tuesday, perfectly summing up the turnaround the World Cup tournament has witnessed in the past few days.
Ever since Australia defeated England by 64 runs in their ICC World Cup 2019 group stage match at Lord’s, the cricket fans and statisticians are out with their calculators, furiously assessing their team's chances of advancing in the showpiece event.
While Australia became the first team to qualify for the semi-finals with 12 points after Lord's victory, England's shaky run on their home soil has opened the chances for the likes of Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Pakistan to rise and climb up the points table, much to the liking of fans.
After losing to Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Australia, England is now anxiously sitting in dangerous territory with 8 points to their name, simultaneously waiting for teams with 7, 6, and 5 points each or simply Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan in that particular order to make a mess in their upcoming contests.
But England's nightmare is far from over. Their final two clashes before they can book a ticket to semis happen to be against New Zealand and India, both of which are unbeaten so far. And should they lose either of the matches, things will get really, really interesting from thereon.
So it shouldn't come as a surprise that the cricket enthusiasts on microblogging site have finally breathed a sigh of relief in a tournament that once seemed lopsided for the teams in the first half on the points table cruising away with no hiccups.
That the hosts England are on quicksand and tournament could tilt in the favour of Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka - has brought a ray of new hope for supporters on Twitter.
England, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Sri Lanka who is it gonna be for th 4th place now?Who would have thought England place to semi finals would be jeopardy!! Bangla tigers richly deserve the spot..! Into the interesting last part of the tournament #CricketWorldCup #AUSvsENG— Prasannakumar Palani (@prasannatrl) June 25, 2019
The best scenario for Pakistan to qualify for the semis will be if:They win remaining three games England lose one more gameSri Lanka lose one more game— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) June 25, 2019
Australia's win over England is a good result for Bangladesh, Sri Lanka & Pakistan.England's remaining matches:India & New ZealandBangladesh yet to play:India & PakistanSri Lanka have to play:S Africa, WI & IndiaPakistan yet to play:NZ, Afghanistan & Bangladesh#CWC19 pic.twitter.com/RD5A4vEXqd— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) June 25, 2019
Australia book their place in World Cup semi-finals. If SL 🇱🇰 win all 3 remaining games, #SriLanka can move to Semi-finals! Or If SL win 2, SL have to hope that England lose all their remaining matches, Bangladesh do not win more matches and Pakistan lose at least one #LKA pic.twitter.com/c3a8H0WJPd— Sri Lanka Tweet 🇱🇰 (@SriLankaTweet) June 25, 2019
This is the Cricket World Cup.There can be a lot of things here.Today Australia's win for England has awakened the hopes of the three countriesBangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan😎Congratulations team Australia.#ENGvAUS #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/fIERI3CGx9— Mirza Ahmed Shuvo (@MirzaAhmedShuv1) June 25, 2019
After #ENGvAUS, as it standsEnglandPlayed - 7 Points - 8 Next - India, New ZealandSri LankaPlayed - 6 Points - 6 Next - SA, WI, IndPakistan - 6 Played - 6 Points - 5 Next - NZ, Afg, BanBangladesh Played - 7 Points - 7 Next - Pak, India#cwc19 semi, who?— Vishnu T. Narayanan (@visnarayanan) June 25, 2019