Bengaluru, July 1: Pakistan were eagerly waiting for India to defeat England in the crucial ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 league game at Edgbaston on Sunday.
However, their expectations were dashed as Eoin Morgan's side thumped India by 31 runs in the match to get back into the race for the semifinals. Pakistan had briefly toppled the hosts from the top four after beating Afghanistan narrowly on Saturday, but could stay there barely for 24 hours before getting pushed down to the fifth position.
Sarfaraz Ahmed's side has only game left now which they have to win not just to get to 11 points but also by a comprehensive margin to get their net run-rate into a positive shape. But even that will not be enough if England beat New Zealand in their final league game in Chester-le-Street on July 3. Twelve points will take England beyond Pakistan's farthest reach.
It is understandable that Pakistani supporters, including their experts, were disappointed with Sunday's result.
But on some occasions, their reactions were excessive.
Take for example, the tweet from former Pakistan captain Waqar Younis. The former speedster turned philosophical in his tweet while taking an oblique dig at India.
"It's not who you are.. What you do in life defines who you are.. Me not bothered if Pakistan gets to the semis or not but one thing is for sure.. Sportsmanship of few Champions got tested and they failed badly."
It's not who you are.. What you do in life defines who you are.. Me not bothered if Pakistan gets to the semis or not but one thing is for sure.. Sportsmanship of few Champions got tested and they failed badly #INDvsEND #CWC2019— Waqar Younis (@waqyounis99) June 30, 2019
The 47-year-old's observation only makes us laugh. Instead of certifying India on their spirit, why doesn't the legend contribute to train up his national team who can't beat a side like West Indies and rue that somebody else did not do it for them?
Yes, India batted slowly in their final overs. But that's India's problem and the team management will look into that. Who is Younis to talk about morality on India? India have not come to the World Cup to play Pakistan's games. As supporters, we are not unhappy that India have lost. This will help them nullify the 'law of average' threat in the league stage itself. Win and loss are part of the game and losing is no shame if you have played consistently well.
It was surprising to see that Younis, being a former sportsperson himself, did not give the England side its due credit. The home team's bowlers bowled superbly in the death overs to deny the Indian batsmen any freedom to throw their bats around. And on the top of it, India were a bit careful about not damaging their net run-rate too much so that it could harm them in the subsequent phase of the World Cup. These are the factors that also played big roles in the game but Pakistan took it as a conspiracy to boot them out of the tournament.
Younis's moralistic advice sounded even more ridiculous when one remembers the matches that Pakistan used to win in Sharjah in the 1990s. In 1991, India were made to bat after dark (streetlights were on and India went on batting) in a game against Pakistan and even the bat had slipped off Sachin Tendulkar's hands and Mohammad Azharuddin's side had lost by just four runs. Younis too had played in that match.
Had he spoken about the sportsmanship then? Or does it hurt only when one himself is at the receiving end?