Indian captain Virat Kohli batted in the nets.© AFP
India tackles Afghanistan On Wednesday in a must-win match in Abu Dhabi and Virat Kohli’s men must catch up on the setbacks of two crushing defeats at the hands of arch-rivals Pakistan and New Zealand and put their best foot forward against Mohammad Nabi’s outfit. Afghanistan is currently in second place in Group 2 of the Super 12 phase of the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup, while India is struggling with no points and a very poor net run rate.
But all that could change if Kohli’s men counter the threat from Afghan spinners and achieve a major victory. Pakistan have already booked their place in the semi-finals after their fourth win on the trot as they beat Namibia on Tuesday night.
As things stand, India have to beat Afghanistan, Namibia and Scotland by large margins to make up for their dismal net run rate of -1,609.
But that will not be enough. They will have to hope that Afghanistan beats New Zealand in their last heat in the group, but not by a large margin, as this will give the Afghans a good chance to qualify as they have a brilliant net run rate of 3,097. , which is even better than that of group leaders Pakistan.
There are also other scenarios open in which the Kiwis have to lose against Scotland or Namibia, but that seems rather unlikely given how the teams stand together.
India will therefore have to record a major victory over Afghanistan to not only improve their run rate but also bring down the Afghans’ run rate.
Everything is definitely not over for Virat Kohli’s team, but the road ahead is a difficult one. They will have to show their best form in the remaining matches and hope that luck will shine on them too.