Cricket World Cup 2023: All eyes are on the weather before Australia clashes with South Africa in the Kolkata semi-final semi-final.
Worries about the weather may be severe enough to trigger the Reserve days.
Australia vs South Africa – H2H
South Africa will be a tough test for Australia in the coming last-four fixture. The African representative have beat the Asian side six times over the last eight clashes since 2020.
The only two times that saw Australia the better side were in 2023, when they beat SA by 6 and 3 wickets, respectively.
With the 2023 ODI World Cup reaching the knockout stages, reserve days come into play for the semi-finals on November 15 and 16 and then the final on November 19.
While there is virtually no chance of them being needed when India face New Zealand in Mumbai, there is the prospect of rain impacting the Australia-South Africa clash in Kolkata so here’s a rundown of how things work.
Is the forecast worrying for Kolkata?
There has been a forecast of rain ahead of the semi on Thursday – the scheduled day.
Well, as ever, it depends on which website you look at, but there is undoubtedly a reasonable threat of rain playing a part. At the moment, Friday looks the more problematic day, with Thursday, the scheduled day of the semi-final, having a prediction of around a 50% chance of seeing showers.
When does the reserve day come into play?
Before activating the reserve day, the umpires will try to complete the match on the scheduled day, including reducing the game to a minimum of 20 overs per side. Only if this isn’t possible does the extra day come into play. A reserve day was needed in the 2019 semi-final between India and New Zealand at Old Trafford.
How does it work?
If a match isn’t completed on the scheduled day and the reserve day is used, there are two scenarios for how the match is played out depending on when the final rain interruption has occurred.
Courtesy of the ICC playing conditions, here are two working examples:
Example 1: Match starts at 50 overs per side and there is an interruption at 19 overs. Overs are reduced to 46 overs per side, and play is about to resume. Before another ball is bowled, it rains, and play is abandoned for the day. As the match did not resume under the revised overs, the match should continue on the reserve day at the original 50 overs per side, with the overs reduced if necessary during the reserve day.
Example 2: The exact start as in example 1, i.e., the match starts at 50 overs per side, and there is an interruption at 19 overs. Overs are reduced to 46 overs per side, and play is about to resume. This time, play starts, and after an over has been bowled, it rains, and play is abandoned for the day. As the match has resumed, it is continued on the reserve day at 46 overs per side with the overs further reduced if necessary during the reserve day.
What happens if there’s no result?
If a minimum of 20 overs per side is not possible across the two days and the match has no result, the team that finished higher in the group stage will progress to the final. That means South Africa would go through to the decider in Ahmedabad on November 19 (where it is doubtful to rain).