KARACHI: Pakistan’s defeat against India has been described as “shameful” and “humiliating” by country’s former players.
Wasim Akram said India’s cricket had improved a lot due to the IPL and massive investment in the sport.
“The bitter truth is we are lagging behind them in many ways and we are not producing fearless players. Before every Pak-India match there is a 50-50 chance for either side to win but on Sunday we just gave it away. It was a bad defeat.”
He pointed out that India have many advantages over Pakistan as their captain is more mature and experienced as is their team.
Wasim said he was disappointed with the performance of the bowlers in the final 10 overs as they cracked under pressure.
Another ex-captain and wicket-keeper Rashid Latif said, “Even if Pakistan had fielded its full 15 players I don’t think the result would have been different. Such is the difference between the two sides now.”
Shahid Afridi called for a major shake-up in the wake of the humiliating defeat.
“The gap between Indian and Pakistani teams is bigger than ever! India has evolved and we are way behind now,” he said on his Twitter account.
“We need to overhaul approach, mindset and work on improving our stagnating skills and play with clear minds.”
Former Test opener Aamir Sohail said while the media loves to present it otherwise the truth is this Pakistan team doesn’t have the ability to beat the current Indian side.
Former express bowler Shoaib Akhtar lashed out at the players for showing no heart.
“Who in their right mind would open the bowling in such English conditions with a spinner who can turn the ball.
“The only way to beat India was to bowl them out for a manageable total by taking wickets. Yet, instead of attacking them with the new ball, we choose to contain them. This was poor captaincy and poor decision making by the team think-tank,” he said.
Shoaib also took head coach Mickey Arthur to task for saying after the match that it was his decision to play Wahab Riaz over Junaid Khan as there was no difference between Junaid and Hassan Ali, who played in the match.
“It is astonishing that the coach does not see any difference between Junaid and Hassan. How can you compare them — one is a natural left-arm swing bowler and the other is a right-arm pacer.”
Ex-Test batsman Mohammad Yousuf said people needed to accept the reality.
“They are a top side which is why they are number three in ODI rankings and we are languishing at number eight because of our poor performances.”
Yousuf said that even though the Edgbaston pitch was excellent for batting none of the Pakistani batters showed the technique to make use of the conditions.
“What happened is shameful. It is humiliating for us because we have played and beaten India many times. We used to dominate them.”
Yousuf called for sacking Arthur.
Former Test opener and ex-head coach of the Pakistan team, Mohsin Khan said if Pakistan continued to play the way they did against India they would face similar results against South Africa and Sri Lanka.
“The coach has been a big disappointment as the team appeared to be without a plan while I am disappointed with the captaincy of Sarfraz Ahmed who appeared lost in the match.”
Viv Richards and Brian Lara, appearing on PTV sports, said on paper India were always favourites to win the match.
“Look at the other teams and their number three batsman. Pakistan is playing Babar Azam in such a big event at such a crucial position. They have got it wrong,” Richards said.
Lara termed India as one of the favorites to reach the final after their dominating performances against Pakistan.
An upset Saeed Ajmal said he couldn’t understand what planning Pakistan had done for the match.
“Their appeared to be no direction and it made no sense at all to open the bowling with Imad and then given him the final over when India were on a rampage,” the off-spinner said.
Published in Dawn, June 6th, 2017