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Other SportsT20 World Cup 2024: England v Oman - preview, expected line-ups,...

T20 World Cup 2024: England v Oman – preview, expected line-ups, free bets and offers

The state of play

Oh dear. How has it come to this? Defending champions England are facing the very real prospect of being on the first plane home.

Jos Buttler’s side need to win their final two games and win them convincingly to have any hope of progressing to the Super 8s on net run-rate after having their game against Scotland washed out before a heavy defeat by Australia in their second match.

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England play Oman on Thursday evening at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in Antigua, before their group stage ends against Namibia on Saturday.

“The situation will unfold during the game,” Buttler told BBC Sport. “First of all we’ve got no chance unless we win so we’re fully focused on trying to win the game and hopefully if we can do that maybe we’ll get in a position where we can affect the net run-rate.”

Scotland have a NRR of 2.164, thanks largely to their win with 41 balls to spare against Oman, while England are on -1.8.

Scotland do face Australia – who skittled Namibia for just 72 on Wednesday on their way to a nine-wicket win from just 34 balls – on Sunday, while the Australians have already given an indication that they are in no mood to help England’s chances of joining them in the next phase.

Paceman Josh Hazlewood admitted his side would try to make things as difficult as possible for Buttler’s side and might consider going slow late in the game to avoid denting Scotland’s NRR.

He said: “In this tournament you potentially come up against England at some stage again, and they’re probably one of the top teams on their day.

“If we can get them out of the tournament that’s in our best interest, as well as probably everyone else’s.”

Oman are already out after losing their first three games but did post a fairly competitive 150-7 against Scotland in Antigua on Sunday, with opener Pratik Athavale cracking 54 from 40 balls and Ayaan Khan swatting a late unbeaten 41.

Skipper Aqib Ilyas said there was room for improvement and his side hope to be able to cause England problems.

“175 could have been a good score, but we had too many dot balls on a flat track. In the batting we have to improve. 150 was par but we dropped too many chances. Catches, if you take them, puts pressure on the other team.

“This is cricket, sometimes you are at the top, sometimes you are down. (We need to) stay positive – next game we never know. We will hope to compete against England.”

Expected line-ups

Oman: Ilyas, Ayaan Khan, Bilal Khan, Kaleemullah, Prajapati, Kail, Mehran Khan, Athavale (wk), Ahmad, Shoaib Khan, Maqsood (c)

England: Salt, Buttler (c, wk), Jacks, Bairstow, Brook, Ali, Livingstone, Jordan, Archer, Rashid, Wood

How to watch

Sky have the rights to show the T20 World Cup to UK viewers in 2024 and will broadcast every game live. Coverage gets underway on Sky Sports Main Event and Sky Sports Cricket from 7.30pm UK time on Thursday.

In India, the games can be streamed on Disney + Hotstar app and website. They are also available across the Star Sports Network.

Prediction

Nothing other than a pulverising win will do for England. Just take the fight for qualification to the weekend.

Jos Buttler’s men will just be desperately hoping that the weather does not intervene to end the qualification hopes which were already dampened by the wash-out against Scotland.

If the game goes ahead and England somehow fail to win it would surely go down as one of the biggest upsets and darkest days in English sporting history.

Alex Hoad
Alex Hoad
Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.
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