Shoaib Malik questions Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan's roles on failing to chase simple targets

Pakistan lost against arch-rivals India in New York

By Web Desk
June 10, 2024
Shoaib Malik looks during the training session- AFP

Pakistan lost to India in a highly-anticipated match of the T20 World Cup 2024 on Sunday, June 9 at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York.

Pakistan only needed 120 runs to win on 120 balls and the batters failed to chase the target terribly and fell 7 runs short as they scored 113/7 the Indian bowlers targeted their weakness and Jasprit Bumrah got the all-important wickets of captain Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan as they scored 13 on 10 and 31 on 44 in a big match.

This poor display from the Pakistani batters has led them under fire from critics. Former Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik specifically talked about Babar’s and Rizwan’s poor performance in the match on a local channel after Pakistan’s defeat.

Malik questioned the role and presence of the two most experienced players of Pakistan in simple chases.

“If Babar (Azam) and Mohammad (Rizwan) don’t have a role in a chase of 120 then when is their role? This is common sense because they play conventional cricket. Everyone talks about their strike rate so this was the ideal platform for them. It was such a big match that all their previous bad run would have been washed away, and they would have come out of it strongly.”

Rizwan fell to Bumrah and the shot Rizwan played has been criticised by fans and experts. Malik was bamboozled by how Rizwan was not able to read the situation and play accordingly, “I didn’t understand that shot (from Rizwan). They brought back their main bowler to pick up a wicket and he (Rizwan) has been playing for so long and captaining in PSL He should be familiar with the situation and put up his hand and say this is my match.”

If Pakistan had won the last night match against India then this would have been only the second time Pakistan had won against India in a World Cup match (T20 World Cups and Cricket World Cups both). 

The first and last time Pakistan defeated India in a World Cup game was back in the 2021 edition of the T20 World Cup under the leadership of Babar.

Pakistan has qualified for the semi-finals and final of the 2021 and 2022 T20 World Cup editions respectively. However, their qualification for the Super-8s in the T20 World Cup 2024 seems unlikely as the matter has gotten to ifs and buts.

The team will continue their T20 World Cup journey when they play against Canada at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium on June 11 and Ireland on June 16 at the Central Broward Regional Park.