Why the loss to New Zealand could be enough to knock Australia out of the T20 World Cup

Australia's NRR now reads -4.450, which is too low, and they will have to win their next four matches by more than decent margins to have a chance of making it to the knockouts.
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Even Aaron Finch conceded that things have gone out of hands for them to some extent.

Australia, the defending champions, hosts and the favourites, were stunned by the underdogs New Zealand in the opening game of the Super 12 round of the ongoing T20 World Cup on Saturday (October 22). The Kiwis defeated their Trans-Tasman rivals by a whopping 89 runs to get their campaign off to a crackling start.

Meanwhile, this loss might well be enough to knock Australia out of the tournament. Many will be surprised to know this but such is the T20 format that even a 20-run loss is considered a huge one. Aussies have conceded an 89-run defeat and even Aaron Finch reckons that things have gone out of his team’s hands to some extent right now.

“We've taken the fate out of our own hands I think, to a point. We need to be ultra-positive, ultra-aggressive, and I'm sure that we'll all do that,” Finch said while speaking after the end of the match.

Why is NRR important for Australia?

Australia have found themselves in a tough group in Super 12 with England, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Ireland. With things expected to go down the wire in terms of semi-final qualification, all the teams will have to take care of the margin of their losses. With Australia’s NRR already reading -4.450, it will take a huge effort for them to turn this into positive.

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Even if they win their next four matches, it might not be enough for them to make it to the top four. Who better than South Africa would know this scenario then? They were bundled out for just 118 runs against Australia and then the Proteas didn’t chase down scores of around 143 and 144 against Sri Lanka and West Indies quickly enough to boost their NRR.

This led to them ending at the third position in their group stage below England and Australia. South Africa won all their four matches after losing to Australia and had their NRR +0.739. But Australia and England had better NRRs and had shown urgency in finishing off their other games.

Despite winning four matches out of five, South Africa were knocked out and the same could happen to Australia now.