'My personal favourite MS Dhoni played very very slow. I can understand that there was awkward bounce in the wicket but so much difference (in dot balls). Indian batting got stuck because of that. It would have been more trouble….India managed to dodge the bullet,' said Shoaib Akhtar on India-Afghanistan match at the ICC World Cup 2019
Bengaluru: Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has said if India had lost their ICC World Cup 2019 game to Afghanistan there would have been a lot of rumours and speculations.
Indian batsmen struggled against a disciplined Afghanistan on Saturday (June 22) as they were restricted to 224/8 in 50 overs. However, the bowlers, led by Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami (hat-trick) saved the team to win by 11 runs in a last-over thriller in Southampton.
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Akhtar, on his YouTube channel, said India’s batting was exposed and his “personal favourite” MS Dhoni played very very slow. He was referring to Dhoni's 52-ball 28.
"India played very well but not that well as they allowed Afghanistan to come back into the match. According to me, India's batting, except Virat Kohli, was really bad. Despite possessing such a good batting line-up, India failed miserably. I wouldn't call it a batting collapse, but it was bad batting,” Akhtar said.
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He continued, “My personal favourite MS Dhoni played very very slow. I can understand that there was awkward bounce in the wicket but so much difference (in dot balls). Indian batting got stuck because of that. It would have been more trouble….India managed to dodge the bullet."
Without going into details, Akhtar, who is known as “Rawalpindi Express”, said there would have been rumours and speculations if India had lost.
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"If India had lost the match, there would have been a lot of rumours. There would have been a lot of speculations, which you and I don't know what they would have been. Congratulations to Afghanistan. They fought back well," he opined.
"India's batting was bit exposed....people are waiting out there to make headlines with different stories. I don't want to go into details,” he added.
Akhtar praised Jasprit Bumrah who was the Man-of-the-match for his 2/39 in 10 overs. "Jasprit Bumrah has to be one of the top-notch fast bowlers in the world.”
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Last Updated Jun 24, 2019, 6:02 PM IST