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England eye Super 8 berth; ousted New Zealand search elusive win

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North Sound, June 14: Defending champions England will be eager to brush aside Namibia ruthlessly here on Saturday and stay relevant in the race to the T20 World Cup Super Eight stage.
England were living on the edge after a washout against Scotland and a loss against Australia, but the Ben Stokes-led side turned it around in style with an eight-wicket win over Oman.
After bundling out Oman for 47, England raced past the target in just 3.1 overs, a record margin of 101 balls to spare.
The result has also done wonders to England’s net run rate (NRR), the crucial separating factor between them and Scotland in Group B.
The Three Lions’ NRR leapt from -1.8 to +3.08, going past Scotland’s +2.16.
However, Scotland have five points to England’s three.
Hence, the former two-time champions will need to defeat Namibia to go equal with Scotland and then hope that the latter will lose to Australia, who have already qualified for Super Eight.
In that scenario, England will enter Super Eight with better NRR, but an upset win over Australia by Scotland or a washout at Gros Islet will eliminate Stokes and his wards.
But skipper Stokes sounded confident after their massive win over Oman.
“I’ve been around long enough to know how it works,” Stokes said after their win over Oman. “We know what’s going on in the dressing room. We have lots of confidence in our team and we have another huge match to come,” he added.
The pitch at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium here has offered steep bounce and turn.
England bowlers such as leg-spinner Adil Rashid (4/11) and the pace duo of Jofra Archer and Mark Wood, who claimed identical figures of 3/12, exploited it to their advantage while bowling out Oman for their lowest over T20I total of 47 — the overall fourth lowest in the T20 World Cup.
Stokes will hope to win the toss again to unleash his bowlers against the inexperienced Namibia who had folded for 72 in their last match against Australia.
Match starts: 10.30pm IST

Evicted NZ search
elusive win

New Zealand will take on Uganda at the pace-friendly Tarouba in what will be first of their two dead rubbers of this T20 World Cup.
Afghanistan pushed the Kiwis out of the Super Eight race from Group C following their win over Papua New Guinea here.
It meant that the Black Caps have failed to advance from the group stage in a World Cup for the first time in a decade, across ODI and T20 formats.
The Kiwis will hope that they will head back home with their heads held high securing wins over newcomers Uganda and PNG.
Their ageing batters have looked woefully out of sorts and desperately in need of a revival, even as bowlers had their moments.
Match starts: 6am IST.

SA face Nepal, aim
four in four

Having already stormed into the Super Eight, South Africa will take on Nepal in a clash between Group D table-toppers and wooden spooners at Kingstown.
Anrich Nortje, who is the joint second leading wicket-taker with eight scalps, has been in splendid form, and he will look to make life tough for Nepal batters.
The Proteas would also hope that their top-order in Quinton De Kock, Reeza Hendricks, skipper Aiden Markram and Tristan Stubbs to get back their mojo ahead of the Super Eight.
Match starts: 5am IST. (PTI)

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