Dhaka, June 23 (UNB) — Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss against South Africa on Sunday at Lord's, London and opted to bat first.
Before heading to this match, both of Pakistan and South Africa went through a similar fate in the World Cup, and both of them are close to being got out of the race of the semi-finals.
Pakistan have played five matches and won just one. South Africa, on the other hand, played six matches and came up victorious in one game. At the same time, both the teams got one point each from one wash-out game.
South Africa (Playing XI): Quinton de Kock(w), Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis(c), Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Imran Tahir
Pakistan (Playing XI): Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Sarfaraz Ahmed(w/c), Haris Sohail, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Wahab Riaz, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Amir
Dhaka, June 23 (UNB)- Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan’s assistant and co-founder of PTI Naeem ul Haque made a major social media slip-up on Thursday after he posted an old picture of former Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar and captioned it as ‘PM Imran Khan 1969’. This comes right after PM Imran Khan himself had made a social media gaffe recently, after attributing a quote of Rabindranath Tagore to Kahlil Gibran, reports The Indian Express.
As soon as Haque had posted the photo, he fell victim to internet trolling. His mistake gave an opportunity to Twitter users to joke about the wrong caption.
One fan posted the childhood picture of Virat Kohli and captioned the photo as “Inzamam-ul-Haq 1976”.
PM Imran Khan 1969 pic.twitter.com/uiivAOfszs— Naeem ul Haque (@naeemul_haque) June 21, 2019
Another Twitter user posted the picture of Indian wicket-keeper MS Dhoni and captioned the post as ‘Kamran Akmal 2007’.
Another user posted the picture of Pakistan batsmen Mohammad Yousuf and Younis Khan and captioned the post as “Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli 1982”.
Pakistan lost to India by 89 runs on Sunday at Manchester, and since then the team has faced serious backlash from their own fans about their training regime and lack of team chemistry.
India maintained their untainted record against Pakistan in a World Cup, as that win made their record extend to seven wins without any losses against the arch-rivals.
Manchester, Jun 23 (AP/UNB) — Carlos Brathwaite crumbled to his knees, devastated his last big shot to finish off one of the most unlikely comebacks in Cricket World Cup history wasn't two yards wider or higher.
Nobody really gave him a chance of getting so close. But after scoring 101 from 82 balls, working with three tail-end batters to add 122 runs, he got West Indies into a scenario where they needed six runs off seven balls for victory over previously unbeaten New Zealand.
The 30-year-old all-rounder clobbered 25 runs off the 48th over from Matt Henry, including sixes on three consecutive balls, then couldn't add another run on the first three balls of the next over — the next-to-last of the scheduled 50 overs — from Jimmy Neesham.
Brathwaite took two runs on the fourth ball of that over to reach his first one-day international century, faced another dot ball and then had the choice: Hit a six from the last delivery from Neesham, or take a single and try to score five runs from the last six deliveries. Not even the New Zealanders would say who was going to bowl the last over of Saturday's game.
And so he launched the last ball of the 49th over down toward the long-on boundary hoping, he said, "willing it to go up, and up and up," and over the rope for six runs. Why not? He'd belted five sixes earlier in the innings.
But this time, New Zealander Trent Boult was there to take a catch just inside the boundary rope. Game over. New Zealand wins by five runs, and takes the lead in the World Cup standings.
"One or two yards more, we would have been victorious tonight," Brathwaite said. "I'm not going to beat myself up, because the ball should have gone for six and we should have won."
The New Zealanders, after holding on to win a tight game for the third time in the tournament, gathered around Brathwaite to commend him on the remarkable innings. In the moment, though, he was barely aware of anyone.
"Obviously heartbreaking to get so close but not get over the line," Brathwaite said. "Devastated ... but also giving thanks for the performance. Even getting the team into the position we got into."
West Indies won the toss and sent New Zealand into bat, taking two wickets in the first over of the match before the Kiwis rallied to post 291-8 in 50 overs.
In reply, West Indies was 142-2 before things started to go haywire. Shimron Hetmeyer (54) and Chris Gayle (87) put on 122 runs for the third wicket but were both out in a slide of five wickets for 22 runs.
Brathwaite had to come in and block the hat-trick ball after Lockie Ferguson took two wickets with consecutive deliveries. He did that and then counterattacked. When everyone else was writing them off, Brathwaite kept batting with Kemar Roach (14), Sheldon Cottrell (15) and Oshane Thomas. He shared a 41-run partnership for the last wicket with Thomas, scoring every one of those runs.
"Give credit to the lower order, everyone that came in. Everyone believed we could get over the line," Brathwaite said. "The fight that the lower order showed was commendable."
Brathwaite averages 45 in test cricket — he has played three tests — but until Saturday hadn't quite lived up to his potential in the one-day arena. He'd had moments when he wasn't sure whether to go hard, or take the less risky option.
At Old Trafford, after such a major comeback, he knew he had only one option.
"Still watch the ball, still react. If it's not a ball I can get a six off, try to get a single," Brathwaite said. Thomas was on high alert for a single, "but if it came in my area, I'd try do finish the game on that ball.
"I just knew how much everyone in the dressing room wanted it."
After one win from six games, including three very narrow defeats, West Indies must beat No. 2-ranked India, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan to have any chance of reaching the semifinals.
As far as Brathwaite is concerned, it's mission possible.
Manchester, Jun 23 (AP/UNB) — Kane Williamson and his Black Caps are making a habit of leaving it really late to clinch their wins at the Cricket World Cup.
Perhaps they're just making sure the people of New Zealand are paying attention to a run that has their team leading the standings.
A batting slide against Bangladesh made a two-wicket win more uncomfortable than it should have been. Then Williamson left it to the last over to hit a six and a four and reach a century as he got New Zealand across the line with three balls to spare against South Africa.
Against West Indies on Saturday, New Zealand had to bat first for the first time in the tournament. Different direction, similar ending.
Williamson hit another century, his ODI career-high 148, as New Zealand posted a competitive total of 291-8 at Old Trafford. Trent Boult took four wickets and West Indies seemed to be no chance of winning until Carlos Brathwaite came out and plundered 101 as he and three tailenders added 122 runs to get within six runs of victory.
Then Brathwaite tried to win it in one shot, when he had an over to spare, but miscued Jimmy Neesham out to Boult in the deep at long-on.
A five-run win is nervy stuff at the end of a day-nighter — particularly if you're watching on TV on the other side of the world at breakfast time in New Zealand.
"It's a bit special, to be honest. It's been a bit of an emotional roller coaster," Boult said. "It's awesome to be a part of it. And I'm sure there will be a lot of proud Kiwis back home, diving into poached eggs, watching a result like that."
New Zealand is unbeaten in six games — five wins and the washed-out game against India — and has three more to go in the league stage.
With 11 points, the 2015 runners-up have a one-point lead over defending champion Australia, are two ahead of India and three clear of England.
They still have Pakistan, Australia and England to play, so there'll be some more tense moments before the semifinal stage.
For now, Williamson and co are content to be sharing around the contributions of wickets and runs, knowing they're on a roll and have been using the same combination throughout.
Boult had taken four wickets through the first four completed games, and doubled his tournament tally with his 4-30 from 10 overs against West Indies. He also took the match-winning catch, and held the earlier catch to dismiss the dangerous Chris Gayle for 87 in the outfield. Matt Henry had taken seven wickets leading into the Manchester game, but got clobbered for 25 in the 48th over — including three sixes from Brathwaite — and finished with 1-76 from nine overs.
Williamson gave credit to the Windies for taking it right to the end, but said his team would take plenty out of it.
"It was a great game of cricket, good to be on the winning side," he said. "It's been a great learning curve for us."
New Zealand has never won the Cricket World Cup, but has been a regular semifinalist and was the form team of the tournament it co-hosted with Australia in 2015 before losing the final to its trans-Tasman rival. Things are going well in England this time.
"Pretty proud ... nice to be on the right side of it, of course," Boult said. "But it's nice to be put under pressure like that with both facets of the game there, and I'm sure that will give us a little bit of confidence moving hopefully deeper into the tournament."
The wheels normally come off for South Africa near the end of the Cricket World Cup. This one's been broken from the start.
South Africa is heading for another World Cup failure, but not like previous campaigns where the four-time semifinalist careered off track with the finish line in sight and earned some sympathy for its efforts.
This time, South Africa is bumbling toward early elimination. Players of the caliber of Dale Steyn, Hashim Amla and captain Faf du Plessis are possibly leaving for one-day international retirement with a bitter final taste of the World Cup. Actually, bitter is all they've ever tasted at the World Cup.
"I can't speak of past World Cups but certainly in this World Cup it seems like guys have been sort of hampered," coach Ottis Gibson said. "That's probably the only word that comes to mind at the moment."
Gibson's comments after the last-over loss to New Zealand on Wednesday summed up South Africa's World Cup situation for the last 20 years.
Past World Cup failures are nearly always mentioned in the same sentence as the present tournament. And it's a struggle, even for the coach, to figure out why South Africa can't get it right.
Gibson's use of the word "hampered" indicated what others have long suspected — a mental block and not a question of talent.
"I need to sit down and work it out," he said.
He wouldn't be the first to try.
True, the Proteas weren't on the top rung of favorites this year. But they shouldn't have slipped this low. South Africa won five straight ODI series before the World Cup and not that long ago swept defending world champion Australia 5-0 in a series.
Possible reasons for the 2019 tournament problems have been put forward: The batsmen clearly haven't made enough runs, leaving the bowlers with an unfair burden. The preparations have been questioned, with no prolonged World Cup camp planned. Injuries played some part. Maybe fatigue too.
But South Africa isn't the only team with players facing a packed schedule.
The AB de Villiers issue added an unwelcome distraction when news broke during the World Cup that the superstar batsman indicated at the last minute that he wanted to come out of retirement to play and was refused.
But teams have dealt with unexpected issues before, and World Cups rarely run perfectly for anyone.
What's left is what Gibson was trying to grasp: Why is South Africa always so tense at the World Cup?
"To see, when we come to this stage, guys go into their shell a bit, is a little bit surprising to be honest," Gibson said.
South African fans and media at home, often seething at the letdowns, also want to know why.
Probably, it's simply the result of a vicious cycle. Failure brings pressure which can hamper performance which can lead to more failure. And even more pressure.
In an indication of the burden felt by South African teams in the buildup to World Cups, it was rumored that cricket bosses called a meeting to ask journalists to tone down their scrutiny of the team ahead of this event.
The burden gets even heavier now.
Steyn and Amla will likely retire from ODIs, joining JP Duminy and Imran Tahir who have already said they will give up after the World Cup. Du Plessis, a strong force in the team, might retire from one-dayers, or at least relinquish the captaincy to start the preparations for 2023. Du Plessis said as many as six or seven players are on their way out.
Young players like fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi, allrounder Andile Phehlukwayo, and batsman Aiden Markram are left.
Gibson said before the tournament that the good news for South Africa was that those new players weren't affected by World Cup failures.
They likely are now.
So how will they respond? South Africa must again try to break the cycle with a new generation.
Lance Klusener was the flashing allrounder who lit up South Africa's World Cup the last time it was held in England 20 years ago. But he was also partly to blame for its calamitous exit in the semifinals.
Klusener dealt with the disappointment in an intriguing way.
He and Allan Donald were involved in the runout that saw South Africa crash out after a tie with Australia in one of the most scintillating finishes to a Cricket World Cup game, and a moment that's right up there with the most painful — even unwatchable — sporting moments for South Africans.
"Nobody died," Klusener said in the aftermath, adding it was just a game. Klusener left it behind the moment he walked off the field. No mental baggage.
It was a hugely unpopular opinion within the team at the time. Maybe a small amount of the sentiment should be taken on board now and in the future.