Gautam Gambhir gives reality check to Pakistan team after Afghanistan loss

Gambhir said that Pakistan’s fielding is a major concern

By Web Desk
October 24, 2023
Former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir. — AFP/File 

Former Indian opener Gautam Gambhir has revealed the reason behind Pakistan’s defeat against Afghanistan on Monday during the ongoing ICC World Cup 2023.

Afghanistan put on a superb batting and bowling display to hand Pakistan a stunning eight-wicket defeat in the Cricket World Cup.

Chasing a 283-run target, Afghanistan were lifted by Ibrahim Zadran (87), Rahmat Shah (77 not out) and Rahmanullah Gurbaz (65) as they scored 286-2 in 49 overs.

Pakistan had made 282-7 in their 50 overs with 74 from skipper Babar Azam and 58 from opener Abdullah Shafique but the total did not prove tough enough for a clinical Afghanistan.

Talking to Star Sports after the match, Gambhir said that Pakistan’s fielding is a major concern.

"We have spoken about this in the Asia Cup as well - Pakistan's fielding. You can have a bad day in bowling or batting, but not in fielding. This has been going on since the Asia Cup and the department has still not improved. I believe Pakistan are the most ordinary fielding team in this World Cup," Gambhir said.

"They are struggling in spin bowling. On this wicket, where there was no dew and there was help for the spinners, none of the three spinners could pick up a single wicket. That is the second concern.

"Cricket has moved on. Cricket is not the same as it was in the 1990s or 2011, where you score 270 or 280 runs and think that your bowling will defend that. Two new balls, flat wickets, five fielders within the circle, you will have to play proactive and attacking cricket.”

The defeat leaves Pakistan´s World Cup campaign in disarray as they gear up to face a formidable South Africa side on Friday.