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Will Australia underperform vs Scotland to hurt England’s chances, can ICC punish offenders?

Will Australia underperform vs Scotland to hurt England’s chances, can ICC punish offenders?

AUS vs SCO: A cheeky comment by Josh Hazlewood has left England fans worried if Australia would underperform against Scotland.

This T20 World Cup hasn’t been all that great for defending champs England, as they are languishing at the bottom of the Group B with one loss and a no result so far. This means, their hopes of making it to the Super 8 are minimal at the moment. Actually, a lot depends on how the AUS vs SCO match pans out, as the latter have won two already.

They also boast of an excellent NRR of +2.164 that goes against England, who have an NRR of -1.800. So in short, if Australia lose vs Scotland, England will b ousted. Even if Australia win narrowly, then also Scotland will scrape through. Being the kingmaker, it seems like the Aussies are in full mood for it.

What Did Josh Hazlewood Say?

After their stupendous win against Namibia, the NRR question did arise, and pacer Josh Hazlewood made a tongue-in-cheek comment. He said, “In this tournament you potentially come up against England at some stage again and, as you said, they’re probably one of the top few teams on their day, and we’ve had some real struggles against them in T20 cricket, so if we can get them out of the tournament that’s in our best interest as well as probably everyone else.”

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“But yeah, it’ll be interesting to see. We’ve never really been in this position before as a team I don’t think, so whether we have discussions or not, we’ll just try and play it again the way we did tonight. Yeah, that’ll be up to people, not me,” he further added.

Aftermath of the Statement, and Can ICC Ban Australia?

After this, it was just assumed that Australia would downplay against the Scottish to harm England’s chances. But then, the question arises, if this situation does arise, can the ICC punish Australia? Well, as per the Article 2.11 of the ICC Code of Conduct, a team of players can be banned for intentionally manipulating the result of a match.

But there is not clear way to prove that this foul play was done, and that too intentionally. If the allegations are raised, and questions asked, and in case of an unclear situation, only the skipper can be penalised, partially.

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