Australia Vs Scotland, T20 WC: Warner To Open Bowling? SCO's Jones Says 'Happy Days'

If Australia beat Scotland via a narrow margin, it means the latter will qualify for the Super 8s thanks to their better NRR over Jos Buttler-led England

T20 Cricket WCup Namibia Scotland Photo_1
ICC Men's T20 World Cup cricket: Scotland take on Australia. | Photo: AP/Ricardo Mazalan

The Mitchell Marsh-led Australia have already qualified for the Super 8s of the ICC T20 World Cup 2024 but their group still has to confirm who will be the second team to progress to the stage. (Full Coverage | Cricket News)

In what would be a grandstand finish for Group B, Jos Buttler's England need to win both their remaining matches against Oman and Namibia and pray for bitter rivals Australia to beat Scotland by a big margin.

As things stand, Australia lead the table with three wins in three (six points) and Scotland are second with two wins and no result (five points); and both have positive net run rates of +3.580 and +2.164, respectively. England, having suffered a 36-run defeat following the washout against Ireland, are fourth while Namibia and Oman are already eliminated. And England's NRR of -1.800 is also a cause of concern.

Talks of Aussies possibly doing the Scots a favour to see their Ashes rivals out of the tournament continue to dominate the build-up ahead of their final group game, scheduled for the weekend.

Scotland opener Michael Jones said they wouldn't see a problem if Australia 'helped' win the match which, in turn, would end England's title defence in the group stage itself. He even suggested that the Aussies might hand David Warner the new ball.

“I was watching it live actually, laughing to myself,” Jones was quoted in The Independent of Hazlewood’s comments.

“I watched that interview and I watched (former Australia captain) Tim Paine when he was saying they should field half a side. I’m not particularly close to them, I don’t know any of the Australian players, but it would be good if we could have a little word and sort something out.

“The rivalry between England and Australia is massive. If they want to play that way then happy days. We won’t be complaining. If they want to let David Warner open the bowling or something like that it would be pretty funny.

Hazlewood made the remark after Australia's win over Namibia, which confirmed their passage to the next stage of the competition.

"In this tournament you potentially come up against England at some stage again. 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.

This Is How Group B Stands.

"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. That'll be up to [other] people, not me," Hazlewood said.

"Whether you get close and you just knock it around and drag it out. There's a few options there but… to take confidence from winning and winning well, I think that's almost more important than potentially trying to knock someone else out. They [England] have still got a lot to do on their behalf as well, so I think it'll become clearer the closer we get to that sort of stuff," Hazlewood added.

However, if Australia manipulate the result against Scotland, their skipper Marsh could face a ban. If deemed guilty by match officials, Marsh could be charged under Article 2.11 of the ICC's code of conduct, which is conceived to avert the manipulation of games for "inappropriate strategic or tactical reasons… such as when a team deliberately loses a pool match in an ICC Event in order to affect the standings of other teams in that ICC Event."