The Pakistan Cricket Association showered the Indian team with praise for their incredible run to the World Cup final, with the legendary Wasim Akram saying their cricket is “in a good place” despite losing to Australia in the title clash. Australia ended India’s series in the final with a six-wicket win to extend their dominance in the tournament. “Obviously they must be devastated to lose the final, but in cricket these things happen. India had a bad day and unfortunately it came in the final,” Akram said.
“You look at their structure, the money for players, the well-thought-out programs and the back-up talent and they really just need to keep doing these things. Their cricket is in a good place,” he added.
Akram said that as a former player he knows how mentally strong the Australians are in the knockout match.
“I was captain when we played them in the 1999 World Cup final and even though we had beaten them in the league stage, they were a different team in the final, just like yesterday in Ahmedabad.” Some, such as former Pakistani wicketkeeper Rashid Latif, felt that the Indian team was in no way inferior to the Australians.
“Maybe it’s just a psychological issue with the Indian players. This team was worthy of winning the World Cup final, but credit to the Australians for once again showing how mentally strong and organized they are in their sport,” Latif said.
Latif called seamer Mohammad Shami’s bowling excellent during the World Cup.
“You look at the way he has developed and done so well. He was the standout player for India in this World Cup in my opinion.” Former Pakistan captain Misbah ul Haq felt the Australians had read the field better than the Indians and the toss proved crucial.
“For a side battle, it used to take more than 300 men on this field to defend it,” he said.
Misbah also praised Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli for leading by example throughout the tournament.
“I think the younger players must have learned a lot from these two, both in the dressing room and otherwise at this World Cup.” Former players Basit Ali and Kamran Akmal felt it was time for India to focus on building a T20 squad for next year’s World Cup.
“…But it will be difficult for the Indian selectors not to consider Rohit, Virat or Jadeja for the South Africa series or even the Champions Trophy in 2025,” Basit said.
Former batsman Mohsin Khan said Pakistan must learn from the way India and Australia had adapted to the demands of modern cricket, especially during the World Cup.
“Rather than looking at India’s defeat, we should appreciate the fact that they have already played in two ICC finals this year and lost to Australia both times. They are doing something right.”
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