After watching Pakistan make the semifinals of the World T20, memories of the 1992 and 1999 World Cups rush to the mind.
In 1992, Pakistan were on the verge of being eliminated, but came from behind and won the Cup. In 1999, Steve Waugh's Australia were in a similar situation but turned around in the do-or-die match against South Africa and went on to win the World Cup.
The reason for recalling these instances is to drive home the point that a team which turns around gets the mental boost to cross the finishing line ahead of the others.
Captain Hafeez was right in winning the toss and deciding to bat first against Australia because he didn't want to expose his batters to a run chase in a perform-or-perish situation.
It will be different against Sri Lanka. The hosts have won all the matches so far and are high on confidence. More so, they are good players of spin, so how Hafeez handles his bowling, loaded with spinners, will be interesting. Pakistan will look to get Jayawardene, Sangakkara and Dilshan out cheaply.
If the conditions stay normal and Hafeez wins the toss, he should bat first. They have the bowlers to defend a small total rather than their batters chasing down a big target.
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The writer is ex-Pakistan captain