Legendary Pakistani fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has stirred up the cricketing world with his candid remarks regarding India’s unexpected loss to Bangladesh in the Asia Cup 2023 Super Four game. With India already securing a spot in the final, their defeat was a welcome development for Pakistani fans, according to Akhtar.
India’s Unlikely Defeat
In the penultimate Super Four fixture, India had triumphed over Sri Lanka by a margin of 41 runs, cementing their place in the Asia Cup final. This performance showcased India’s dominance and cemented their status as strong contenders. However, what followed was a surprise that no one saw coming.
Taking Bangladesh Lightly
Shoaib Akhtar didn’t mince words as he expressed his view on India’s unexpected loss. Speaking on his YouTube channel, he commented, “Finally, some relief for Pakistan fans, including me, that India has lost the game.” Akhtar speculated that India might have taken Bangladesh lightly, leading to their defeat. He labelled it a “wake-up call for India” and termed the loss “embarrassing.”
Pakistan’s Rollercoaster Ride
Akhtar didn’t stop at discussing India’s loss. He also reflected on Pakistan’s journey in the Asia Cup. Pakistan entered the tournament as the top-ranked ODI team globally but failed to meet expectations. While they dominated the group stage, their performance plummeted in the Super Four stage, culminating in a crucial two-wicket loss to Sri Lanka, knocking them out of the competition.
Sri Lanka’s Deserved Victory
Despite criticism of Pakistan’s performance, Shoaib Akhtar emphasized that Sri Lanka deserved their victory. He defended Sri Lanka, saying, “People were criticizing Pakistan, saying that they got beaten up. Sri Lanka is a good team, not an average team. The same goes for Bangladesh; they are all playing international cricket.”
Looking Ahead to the ODI World Cup
During his YouTube session, Akhtar also discussed the upcoming ODI World Cup and the prospects of India and Pakistan. He cautioned against early favorites, suggesting that it could be “anyone’s game.” Akhtar predicted that smaller teams might shine in the tournament, posing challenges for the giants.