India began the Bangladesh series with 52.08% percentage points (PCT) while South Africa were on 60%. India’s two wins helped them garner 24 points and took their percentage points to 58.93% even as SA’s loss plummeted their percentage points to 54.55%.
Australia with 120 points and percentage points of 76.92% are all but through.
India have 4 remaining Tests at home against Australia. South Africa too have 2 away Tests against Australia and 2 home Tests against the West Indies. It is more or less a shootout between India and South Africa for the second spot in the WTC Final.
What must India & SA do?
1) If SA manage to win a Test in Australia and then clean-sweep West Indies 2-0, India will need to win either three Tests or win two and draw the remaining two Tests against Australia to ensure they finish above South Africa.
2) If India beat Australia 4-0, they will finish with 68.05% points. In that case, SA cannot qualify even if they win all 4 of their remaining matches, for then they will end up with only 66.66%.
3) If India beat Australia 3-0, SA can only qualify with 4 wins in their remaining 4 Tests. If India beat Australia 3-1, then too SA again will have to win all 4 remaining Tests. If SA lose one more Test Down Under, they will be at the mercy of the India-Australia series scoreline to progress.
Are Australia through?
Only if they win their remaining two Tests against South Africa. If they win one and lose the other, they will need five points from the India series.
Are any other teams in the running for a place?
None except Sri Lanka, who have the best chance to pip India and South Africa. Lanka can finish at 61.11% if they win their remaining two Tests against New Zealand and India and South Africa both goof up in all their matches.