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How can your team reach the final

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Australia’s solid victory over South Africa in the space of two days in Brisbane has had huge ramifications for the World Test Championship standings and a host of teams are now looking to secure second place in the table.

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India moved ahead of Sri Lanka and the Proteas and up to second with an emphatic 188-run victory over Bangladesh at Chattogram and are now in the box seat to join Australia in next year’s World Test Championship at The Oval.

There is still a lot to play for, with Sri Lanka suddenly back in the picture in a big way and Pakistan still in for a shot if they can win their ongoing Test against England in Karachi.

Five teams can still make it to the World Test Championship final, and here’s what needs to happen for your team to make it happen.

1st – Australia – 76.92% of possible points

remaining string: South Africa (at home, two Tests), India (away, four Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 84.21%

Australia are in the box office seat of qualifying for their first World Trial Championship final, with Pat Cummins’ side currently holding a healthy lead at the top of the standings.

After a dominant performance in the first test against South Africa, Australia have two more home matches against the Proteas in Melbourne and Sydney, where they will be confident of performing well given their current rich run.

Four Tests in India for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in February and March next year will be the final task for Australia this period, but they may almost have their place in the final before the finish if things go their way on home soil.

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The second – India – 55.77% of the possible points

remaining string: Bangladesh (Away, One Test), Australia (Home, Four Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 68.06%

Even with a host of key players on the sidelines through injury, India cruised to an easy win over Bangladesh away from home and will be keen for a series sweep in the second Test in Mirpur.

India will be hoping veteran skipper Rohit Sharma recovers from his thumb injury in time to feature in this clash and a positive result against Shakib Al Hasan’s team will see the Asian side well positioned for second place.

They will need to achieve some good results during their series against leaders Australia if they are to make back-to-back appearances in the World Test Championship final, so there is still plenty of cricket for India to navigate.

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Third – South Africa – 54.55% of possible points

remaining string: Australia (away, 2 Tests), West Indies (home, 2 Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 69.77%

Losing a Test match in two days is never good news, and South Africa were dealt another blow after losing by six wickets to Australia when they were knocked out and replaced by India in second place in the World Test Championship standings.

The good news for Dean Elgar’s team is that they still have a chance to regain their place inside the top two, but they must react quickly during their ongoing series in Australia.

South Africa have the luxury of two home matches against the West Indies in February and March, but they will want to make sure they don’t leave themselves with much to do by the time this series comes around.

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Fourth- Sri Lanka – 53.33% of possible points

remaining string: New Zealand (away, 2 Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 61.11%

One of the big winners in recent Tests has been Sri Lanka, whose chances of making an opening appearance in the World Test Final have improved without even playing a match.

Regardless of other results between now and next year’s final, Sri Lanka must still win all their remaining Test matches this period to have any hope of an appearance.

Only one series remained for Sri Lanka – a two-Test trip to New Zealand in March – in which they won just twice in 19 attempts.

New Zealand’s maximum points would lift them to 61.1%, meaning they’re hoping Australia can continue on their winning streak and can sneak up on second place with two wins against the Kiwis.

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5th – England – 44.44% points possible (out of contention)

remaining string: Pakistan (away, one of three remaining Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 46.97%

While England are one of the typical teams in the current World Test Championship period, poor results early in the period meant that they could no longer qualify.

They could end Pakistan’s hopes of winning the third and final Test of the series underway in Karachi, with that match currently remaining in the balance.

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Sixth – Pakistan – 42.42% of possible points

remaining string: England (home, 1 test remaining), New Zealand (home, 2 tests remaining)
Best possible finish percentage: 54.76%

The formula is simple for Pakistan if they are to reach the final of the World Test Championship, with Babar Azam’s side demanding victory in all their remaining matches to have any chance of finishing in the top two.

If they can pull off a victory in Karachi, Pakistan will be hoping Australia can continue their winning ways and cause South Africa and India to stumble down the rankings over the coming months.

But it will take everything to get ahead for Pakistan if they are to make it happen and advance to next year’s winner at The Oval.

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7th – West Indies – 40.91% points possible (out of contention)

remaining string: South Africa (away, 2 Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 50%

There were only two Tests left for the West Indies, with the final series losing 2-0 to Australia leaving Kraigg Brathwaite’s side with no chance of progression.

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Eighth – New Zealand – 25.93% of points possible (out of contention)

remaining string: Pakistan (away, 2 Tests), Sri Lanka (home, 2 Tests)
Best possible finish percentage: 48.72%

While New Zealand still have four Tests left this term, they will not be able to defend the World Series scepter they won at Lord’s last year.

They can put the final nail in the coffin of both Pakistan and Sri Lanka during their upcoming series.

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9th – Bangladesh – 12.12% of potential points (out of contention)

remaining string: India (home, one test)
Best possible finish percentage: 19.44%

It has been a very disappointing campaign for Bangladesh so far, as the Asian side are sure to finish last in the standings.

Their final match of the season comes in Mirpur against India and they will be hoping to reverse the result from the first Test of the series at Chattogram.

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