Ravi Speaks:



Today in the morning when I was doing my morning- exercises in the park near my house-two little boys aged around 12 years or so came to each person in the park doing the exercises and one of them was simply asking each one as to what could be the reason for Pakistan to win against such a strong Indian side. The other guy was simply telling us that they were taking just the feedback for their satisfaction. This simply reflected the shock in which both of them were even on the next morning. As if they never thought India to lose and lose in such a shameful fashion. My reply to them was that it is just the beginning they should watch the rest of the games and they would find India as the winners. Simply to encourage them and ensure them that things would take a big turn in our favor.

Yesterday before the commencement of the match there was an interview on AAJ-TAK-where Gavaskar, Shahid Afridi, Azharuddin, Wasim Akram, and Suresh Raina were mainly participating. Out of the whole discussion where even the Pakistani players were mentioning India to be the favorites praising the strengths of Indian players far more than their own Pakistani counterparts-one thing was very different and that was the comment from Sunny Gavaskar. He said that The Pakistani team was equally very strong which seemed to be an answer given with seriousness and caution from the veteran. Finally, the outcome of the match came accordingly -which was contrary to all others’ expectations but in line with the guarded statement of Gavaskar.

Not many can forget Javed Miandad clouting a last-ball six off Chetan Sharma and winning for Pakistan the Austral-Asia Cup in 1986. From then on, India was on the ascendant.

Before this game, Pakistan had never beaten India in a World Cup. When eventually they turned the tables, they won by 10 wickets, with 13 balls to spare.

Pakistan’s win was so convincing that even their die-hard fans went momentarily speechless before going full throttle in their celebration. By then, as Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan made a mockery of Indian bowling, Indian fans had already started to leave the stadium.

The law of averages had to catch up with India sooner or later after having won seven ODI and five T20 World Cup games since they first met at Sydney in 1992.

I have seen the whole match yesterday and found one thing for sure the Pakistan team had very good preparations and they beat India on all the fronts of the game comprehensively.

To start with the fast bowler Shaheen Afridi was very devastating in this match. Shaheen Shah Afridi’s bowling would have made even Wasim Akram proud. Fast and straight, and some late movement into the right-handers. This has been Afridi’s template with the new ball in limited-overs cricket. An ESPN Cricinfo stat says that since making his T20 I debut in 2018, the left-arm quick took a wicket in the first over 20 times in 61 innings before this game. On Sunday, he got his 21st, removing Rohit Sharma for a golden duck. It was almost an unplayable delivery for an opener, facing his first ball.

This was a game for Afridi to treasure, returning with the wickets of Rohit, Rahul, and Kohli. He was the showstopper, aided by a collective bowling performance; from Haris Rauf to Shadab Khan in the middle overs.

If we analyze the Indian batting lineup except for Kohli nobody showed any resistance even not to speak of the class.No doubt Kohli played an innings of a captain but alas it was of no use. Initially, experts thought that if India could reach even 150 runs-they would be giving a very good fight to Pakistanis. But I feel the statements of the experts also change with the change in the game in progress. There is no weightage to the forecast given by the game veterans since most of them speak the language changing from ball to ball except certain stalwarts like Gavaskar-whose statement held the ground till the conclusion of the game.

The mix of aggression, class, and arrogance that Azam and Rizwan oozed in chasing down the target offered a throwback to Javed Miandad’s dominance over India in the 1980s. But even in their halcyon days, Pakistan never beat India by 10 wickets. This was their crowning glory and India’s lowest point in this rivalry.

Rizwan strong-armed to an unbeaten 79 off 55 balls. Azam was class personified in his 68 not out off 52 balls. And yet again, India missed the sixth bowler. Hardik Pandya was never going to bowl, and now there’s a question mark over his further participation in the tournament after being hit on the right shoulder while batting. Ishan Kishan fielded for him and in hindsight, the Indian team management might have missed a trick by not including him in the playing eleven at the expense of Suryakumar Yadav. On the heels of three consecutive T20 half-centuries, Kishan was probably well placed to make his good form count.

Finally, experts might blame Dew to be the reason for the failure. No doubt the evening dew in Dubai made the job difficult for the Indian bowlers-but we should not forget that they were defending a pretty modest 151/7. And yet, India was completely outplayed yesterday on the night. The reaction from the Pakistan openers after the victory suggested that they meant business. Although these are the earlier days in the T20 World Cup, it looked like Pakistan have come here to make a statement.







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  1. Absolutely true.... pakistan will make a statement for sure in this world cup and now after yesterday's performance, should be rated as one of the strongest contenders to win this world cup...

  2. It is really very shameful for India to have got 10 wickets defeat with balls to spare.