‘Pakistan would've won 99%. Kohli, Hardik…’: Ex-pacer points two blunders by Babar vs India in T20 World Cup
Mohammad Amir, former Pakistan pacer analysed the Super 12 clash between India and Pakistan. During the discussion, Amir pointed out two areas where Babar Azam's calculations went wrong, labelling one of the two as the "turning point" of the clash.
Pakistan captain Babar Azam has been under thin water despite the team making good progress under his leadership. The team had reached the final four of the T20 World Cup held last year and ended up as the runners-up in the Asia Cup played earlier this year. However, since the defeat against Sri Lanka in the final of the continental tournament, many fingers have been raised against one of the premier batters of the modern day cricket.
Similar opinions are once again being formed as Pakistan endured a four-wicket defeat against India at the T20 World Cup in Melbourne on Sunday. Following the outcome, former captain Salim Malik lashed out at Babar, where he also urged the 28-year-old to leave captaincy.
Mohammad Amir, former Pakistan pacer, has echoed similar views while analysing the Super 12 clash between India and Pakistan. During the discussion, Amir pointed out two areas where Babar's calculations went wrong, labelling one of the two as the "turning point" of the clash.
He started off by highlighting Shaheen Shah Afridi's fitness, who conceded 34 runs in his quota and failed to notch a single wicket. "You have to assess the situation from all four corners when you are the captain. When you found out that Shaheen was not in the rhythm to bowl his first two overs. You should have understood that he isn't fit to bowl in the death overs. Could have bowled Shaheen's two overs in the middle as he could have picked wickets.
"The way they (Indian batters) smashed sixes against Nawaz, they wouldn't have hit them against Shaheen. Had Shaheen bowled there (11th over), all you wanted was one wicket. If either Pandya or Kohli got out at that point, then you had the chance to win the game," said Amir in a video shared on ICA Sports' YouTube channel.
He then jumped to the point, when India required 48 in the final three overs. Babar had handed the ball to Shaheen at that point, who conceded 17 runs in the over, thus reducing the equation to 31 off the final two overs.
Amir believes Babar made a blunder at this point and should have instead handed the ball to Haris Rauf, who was hit for two sixes by Virat Kohli in the consecutive over.
"The turning point of the game was India needing 48 runs in three overs to win. While the equation was at 60 in the last five overs, Haris conceded just 4-5 runs and then Naseem gave seven runs. To score 48 runs in three overs is not an easy job for any batter.
"As a captain, you should have thought about who your stop bowler is in such a situation. If Haris would have bowled at that point, with the kind of rhythm he was bowling, Pakistan would have won the match 99 percent. Haris might have picked up the wicket of either Pandya or Kohli in the 18th over," the ex-cricketer further stated.
Kohli, who scored an unbeaten 82 off 53 balls, led India's 160-run chase, which was completed in the final ball of the contest.