Bengaluru, June 24: The Pakistan cricket team's unpredictable tag was confirmed once again on Sunday when they beat South Africa in a must-win game by 49 runs to keep their hopes alive in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
Batting first, Pakistan scored 308 for seven and then restricted the opponents to 259 for nine in 50 overs.
This loss also meant that for South Africa, it was the end of their campaign in this edition.
There is an eerie similarity between Pakistan's campaign at the 1992 World Cup and this one. In fact, the Men in Green's journey in the 1992 edition was exactly like that this year after the conclusion of the sixth game. They have five points after six games with two wins, three losses and one washout. In 1992, Imran Khan's side went on to win the final three of their eight league matches to storm to the semifinals before eventually going on to win the title.
This year, too, Pakistan need to win all their four remaining games and they have started off well with the thumping win over the Proteas at Lord's. In 1992, Pakistan beat hosts Australia, New Zealand and Sri Lanka in their final three games to reach the last four. This year, they still have New Zealand, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to play. New Zealand, who had lost the semifinal in the 1992 edition to Pakistan, remain a common feature of both fixtures. In both editions, also, the Kiwis have been the table toppers.
However, things are easier said than done for Pakistan. The current squad is no match for the 1992 one that had comprised players of the calibre of Wasim Akram, Javed Miandad, Inzamam-ul-Haq besides the evergreen Imran. There are some talented match-winners in the current Pakistan side as well, but they have been very inconsistent and hence unpredictable. Sarfaraz Ahmed is not as inspiring a captain like Imran, but his experience of winning a trophy on England soil two years back makes it unwise to rule him out either. All in all, Pakistan are in an interesting position now and would not like to squander it from here.