Rain forced the cancellation of the T20 World Cup match between champions Australia and England on Friday, placing both teams’ hopes of making the semi-finals in jeopardy and disappointing Melbourne Cricket Ground spectators.
In a group of four teams with three points, England emerged from a dismal day at second place in Group 1 as the earlier Ireland-Afghanistan match was also postponed at the location. With a game remaining, New Zealand leads the group in run rate ahead of Ireland in third place and Australia in fourth position, but the Black Caps can regain first place with a victory over Sri Lanka on Saturday in Sydney.
None of England, Australia, or Ireland can afford to lose another game in a tournament where four out of the 14 Super 12 games to date have been lost to weather and other disruptions, with the top two teams moving on to the semifinals. The outfield has gotten as wet as I’ve ever seen it over the past couple of weeks, according to Australia captain Aaron Finch, a native of Melbourne.