London - All of Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and even the West Indies, who have won just once at the 2019 Cricket World Cup, are still in with a shout of making the semi-finals. 

Hosts England have two massive fixtures remaining against India and New Zealand, and if the win both of those they will secure their spot in the last four, but it is all getting very interesting in the race for the final playoff spot. 

The only teams who stand no mathematical chance of making the semis are the lowly Afghanistan, and the Proteas

It has, quite comfortably, been South Africa's worst ever showing at a World Cup. 

Seven matches played, five losses, one 'no result' and only one win, which unsurprisingly came against Afghanistan, is South Africa's woeful record at the tournament. 

It is the lowest point of skipper Faf du Plessis' captaincy, the lowest point of Ottis Gibson's reign as coach and it should also be the lowest point in the careers of most of the players on tour. 

Things have been that bad. 

Now, somehow, the Proteas must find a way to get up for two more pool stage matches that mean absolutely nothing to them in the context of the tournament. 

A clash against Sri Lanka in Durham on Friday will be followed by a trip to Manchester to take on the Aussies on July 6. 

Both of those fixtures will mean something to their opposition, but the South African World Cup charge is already dead and buried. 

What, then, is there left to play for? 

Other than the obvious 'playing for pride' cliche, which certainly does apply here given how poor this side has been and how much faith those back home have lost, there are a few other areas of importance to consider. 

While this will be the last World Cup for the likes of Hashim Amla, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir and probably Du Plessis, there are a number of players who are expected to represent South Africa at the 2023 showpiece in India. 

Kagiso Rabada is averaging 50.83 at his first World Cup, having taken just six wickets, and while he almost certainly came into the tournament at less than 100% having been overbowled, it still wasn't a good enough return. 

The 24-year-old is considered one of the best in the business and is South Africa's main strike bowler. A good showing over the next two games to remind everyone what he is capable of would be great to see, even if it can't change South Africa's future at the tournament. World Cup wickets are still World Cup wickets, and if Rabada wants to get up to record numbers in the years ahead, he will need a few more over the next two games. 

The same goes for Aiden Markram

Also 24-years-old, Markram has come nowhere near delivering on his potential when it comes to ODI cricket. 

Considered by many to be a future captain of the Proteas, he has averaged 21.20 at the tournament and, with 24 ODIs now under his belt, Markram averages just 27.68 in the format as a whole. 

He has shown devastating form on the domestic stage, but has not been able to translate that into international cricket. 

If Markram is to emerge as a real option for the captaincy, he needs to show that he is indispensable to the team first, and so far he has not done that.

Andile Phehlukwayo is another who will be in the 2023 squad, and is one of very few to have shown positive signs on this tour. 

A strong finish from Phehlukwayo will prove that the investment shown in him over the last couple of years will be worth it in the long run and that he is well on track towards becoming one of South Africa's best ever allrounders. 

Rassie van der Dussen is the other South African success story and another name that has come up when discussing the captaincy. He is averaging 54.00 and has been a picture of composure and mental strength throughout all of the chaos. If he can finish the tournament strong, then there is no reason that Van der Dussen won't be on his way to a Test debut and potentially even higher honours. 

For Lungi Ngidi, getting through the last two games without any further injury worries is important, though the brains trust might opt for Beuran Hendricks instead for exactly those worries.

Du Plessis acknowledged after Sunday's 49-run, final-nail-in-the-coffin loss to Pakistan at Lord's on Sunday that his legacy as skipper had been tainted by the South African showing at the World Cup. 

He is a better captain than these results show, and the Proteas are a better side than one win from seven, regardless of opposition, suggests. 

That said, the South Africans are in this position because they have played incredibly poor cricket. There is no escaping that, and the brutal reaction from back home is not only expected, but justified. 

In these next two games, the Proteas need to show character and fight. More importantly, they need to show that they are still a world class side. 

There are more than a few who have their doubts ...

@LloydBurnard is in England covering the 2019 Cricket World Cup for Sport24 ...