I hope Hazlewood was joking - England coach Mott

England coach Matthew Mott said he hopes Josh Hazlewood’s comments about potentially manipulating net run-rate in their match against Scotland to help knock England out of the T20 World Cup were “tongue in cheek”.

England, who play Oman in Antigua on Thursday, need to win both of their remaining games by big margins to finish level on points with Scotland and have a hope of overhauling their net run-rate.

Scotland meet Australia on Saturday, after England’s final match, and Hazlewood discussed the possibility of his side playing in a way to aid the Scots’ net run-rate as it would be in their “best interests” for England to go out.

“Having grown up in Australia and the will to win every game, I am sure they will come to the fore,” Australian Mott told BBC Sport.

“I am very much hoping it was an off-hand remark by a really good bloke who is having fun.”

Manipulating scenarios in such a manner is a breach of the International Cricket Council’s code of conduct, rather than an offence against the sport’s anti-corruption code.

Australia captain Mitchell Marsh could be banned for up to two matches and face a fine if his side were found guilty – something that would be determined by the match referee.

Australia secured their progression by chasing 73 in just 5.4 overs to beat Namibia in Antigua on Tuesday. Were they faced with a similar situation against Scotland, completing the chase slower would benefit Scotland’s net run-rate.

Asked if it was in Australia’s “interest” to make it as difficult as possible for England to progress, Hazlewood said: “Yeah, I think so.

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

“Whether you get close and you just knock it around and drag it out, there's a few options there.”

He later went on to say taking confidence from a win would be “more important than trying to knock someone else out”.

“Knowing Josh, he has got a pretty dry sense of humour,” said Mott, who added he would not use such tactics in a reverse scenario.

“I am hoping it was very much tongue in cheek.”