Friday was probably the biggest game of Pakistan’s tournament as they not only needed to defeat Bangladesh but they also needed to beat them by a large margin in order to qualify for the semi-finals.
Pakistan had to virtually achieve the impossible coming into the game with New Zealand who were in fourth spot and above them having a superior run rate.
Pakistan Unlucky In The End
Pakistan came into the ICC Cricket World Cup as the underdogs and especially weren’t tipped to go far after they started the tournament in bad fashion. In recent weeks they’ve proved everyone wrong by beating both England and New Zealand who have qualified which many believe is unfair. Unfortunately for Pakistan they missed the semi-final due to an inferior run rate. Their coach Mickey Arthur expressed how he felt that it’s pretty unfair that they were eliminated and asked that in future the ICC will consider head to head records instead of net run rates.
Accepting The Inevitable
Nonetheless Pakistan wrapped their campaign with a convincing 94 run victory of Bangladesh on Friday. Pakistan needed to beat Bangladesh by more than 300 runs which meant that they had to at least put up a score of 450. However the way Pakistan batted it was as if they had already accepted their fate but just wanted to do enough to win. Pakistan elected to bat first but they could only score 315 for 9. Only positives from their batting was the innings of Imam-ul-Haq who scored a 100 and Barbar Azam who ended with 96. The pair put on a brilliant partnership of 157 for the second wicket. Other than that the score Pakistan put up was simply not good enough, they would’ve had to virtually bowl Bangladesh out for nothing.
The Tigers have not had a bad tournament at all, many expected them to be one of the struggling sides coming in to the World Cup but they’ve proved everyone wrong. The team shown that they are not just pushovers, but against Pakistan they were just that. The Pakistani bowling lineup ran through the Bangladesh batsmen and dismissed them for a low 221 in 44.1 overs.
Shakib Al Hasan Shines
This was Pakistan’s fourth win in a row since they lost to India a few weeks ago. Shakib Al Hasan again showed why he is one of the best all-rounders in the game, he continued his remarkable run again with with a 64 run knock. He amounted a massive 606 runs throughout the tournament with an average of 86.54. Once again he was not given support from any of his fellow teammates. The Bangladesh dismay came at the hands of Pakistan’s left arm quick Shaheen Afridi, the 19 year old became the youngest player to take a five wicket haul at a World Cup when he ended with figures of 6-35.
The Best Four
The result meant that the Black Caps were through to the semi-finals due to a superior net run rate to Pakistan. They joined giants India, Australia and England in the next round to fight for the coveted trophy. Pakistan finished in fifth with a run rate of -0.525 and 11 points. New Zealand ended with a 0.175 net run rate. Bangladesh ended with 7 points and in 7th place and finished above the likes of the Proteas and West Indies.
The top four consists of arguably the top four nations in the world which should make for some exiting cricket. The World Cup has been very unpredictable therefore we can only wait and see who will prove to be the best in the world.