The Mithali Raj-led India women have had an inconsistent run in the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 in New Zealand so far.
The Women in Blue started their 50-over World Cup campaign in an emphatic fashion after thrashing arch-rivals Pakistan by 107 runs at Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on March 6.
However, India women suffered a 62-run defeat against hosts New Zealand women at Seddon Park in Hamilton on March 10.
India eves bounced back strongly, riding on twin hundreds from Smriti Mandhana (123) and vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur (109) to defeat West Indies women by 155 runs on March 12.
Defending champions England women later defeated India women by four wickets at Bay Oval on March 16.
With two wins and two losses, India women are currently placed third in the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 standings with four points and a Net Run Rate (NRR) of +0.632.
How can India women qualify for ICC Women's ODI World Cup 2022 semi-finals?
As per the format of the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022, each team will play the other seven sides once in the league phase with the top four teams sealing their place in the semi-finals.
India have already played four matches in the tournament so far, winning and losing two each. The Women in Blue are scheduled to face Australia (March 19), Bangladesh (March 22) and South Africa (March 27) in their remaining fixtures of ICC Women’s World Cup 2022.
Four wins from seven matches in the league phase are deemed to be just about enough for a side to qualify for the ICC Women’s World Cup semi-finals.
Since India women have already registered two wins in the ICC Women’s World Cup so far, they need to win at least two of their three remaining fixtures while ensuring they don’t lose the other by a great margin to seal their place in the last four.
Considering India women play a dominant Australia women in their next match, Mithali Raj’s side need to ensure that even if they don’t win, they should not lose by a big margin as it will affect their NRR.
Should India lose the clash against the unbeaten Aussies, India eves then need to ensure that they beat both Bangladesh women and undefeated South Africa women comprehensively to strengthen their NRR and qualify for the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 semi-finals.
It’s also worth mentioning that if India overcome Australia in their next clash, one win from their remaining two games should see them through to the semi-finals.
Featured photo: Marty MELVILLE / AFP