India managed to scrape through their encounter against lower-ranked Afghanistan on June 22 in the ongoing World Cup 2019. Considered the favourites to win the tie, India were in a spot of bother after Afghan spinners restricted them to 224/8 in their 50 overs. But an impressive showing by the bowlers, including a hat-trick by Mohammed Shami helped India to win by a narrow margin of 11 runs. However, former Pakistan bowler Shoaib Akhtar is not too impressed.
After the match, Shoaib Akhtar on his YouTube channel came down heavily on the Indian batting while saying that if Afghanistan had managed to upset the Men in Blue, it would have led to ‘a lot of speculations and false news’. The legendary pacer said that a loss to India would have given ‘headlines’ to a number of people who are waiting for such incidents.
“I was thinking that if India were to lose that match a lot of speculations and false news would have started to flow which neither you (viewers) want nor me. There would have been a number of question marks over their performance because people are waiting out there to make headlines with different stories. I don’t want to go into the details but you know what I mean,” said Shoaib.
Akhtar also said that veteran MS Dhoni’s slow 52-ball-28 was disappointing to see as it could have cost India more than what it did in the end.
“India played very well but not too much as they brought Afghanistan back into the game. Indian batting except Virat Kohli was really bad. They miserably failed in spite of having such a famed batting lineup. MS Dhoni played really-really slow. I can understand that there was a bit of awkward bounce in the wicket but still the amount of dots he played cost India. Indian batting was a bit exposed. But India dodged the bullet and it was a good wake-up call for them,” added Shoaib.
India will now play West Indies on June 27 to extend their unbeaten record in the World Cup 2019.