ICC World Cup 2019: Shoaib Akhtar reacts after India’s loss, says bowlers exposed, speaks about Pakistan’s chances
Former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar said that India tried their best, but unfortunately it was not enough to help Pakistan. India went down to England in Birmingham and while this result rekindled England’s hopes of a semis berth, it put pressure on Pakistan as they now have to win their match against Bangladesh and then hope, New Zealand beat England.
“It was for the first time that Pakistani fans were praying for India to win against England. However, it feels like the prayers couldn’t reach India as they lost the match,” said Akhtar on his YouTube channel.
“It was for the first time since Partition that we were supporting India. I am sure India must have tried their best but their best could not help Pakistan and leave us with a hope,” he added.
Akhtar also said that the England batting order exposed the Indian bowlers and they made full use of the conditions on offer. Opener Jonny Bairstow scored a brilliant 111 and Ben Stokes played a superb knock of 79 off just 54 balls to power England to 337/7.
“The Indian bowlers were completely exposed by Jonny Bairstow and Jason Roy and other England batsmen. I felt that India could have conceded at least 30 runs less. I felt that India could have chased down if the total was around 300. However, it was not the case and we were left disappointed,” said Akhtar.
“The Indian spinners, especially Yuzvendra Chahal, were taken to the cleaners by the English batsmen,” he added.
He also slammed the approach of the Indian top order for the lack of intent in the first 10 overs.
“India needed to get off to a flier during their chase of 338. However, it was not the case and in the mix of things, they started very slowly. And towards, the end as well, they batted very slowly,” he said.
“The Indian batting line-up will have to do a lot of thinking as their middle-order is getting exposed quite a number of times in this World Cup.’