New Delhi: Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar has been left utterly disappointed with the ‘quality of cricket’ being played at the ongoing World Cup in England and Wales.
England, Australia and India have sealed their spot in the semifinals, while New Zealand is almost there in the knockout stage of the tournament, despite their loss to England in their last group stage encounter.
“I am not happy with the quality of cricket being played in this World Cup,” said Akhtar on his Youtube channel.
“The quality of cricket has gone down immensely. It has become very easy to score runs. The bowlers don’t have the quality, the pace and the spin, which bowlers in 1990s and early 2000s used to have. There are three powerplays and two new balls which has made it very easy to score runs,” he added.
Speaking about Wednesday’s game where England thrashed New Zealand by 119 runs to seal their spot in the semis, Akhtar said that the Black Caps played like ‘amateurs’.
“I was disappointed with the way New Zealand played against England. They didn’t give any fight and meekly surrendered before England. They played like amateurs. They didn’t play quality cricket,” said Akhtar.
With England’s win, Pakistan are technically out of the contention of making it to the semis. In order to make it to the knockout stage, Pakistan needed India or New Zealand to defeat England in their last two matches. However, it didn’t happen.
Akhtar, 43, feels Pakistan have no one to blame but themselves for their disappointing campaign in this edition of the World Cup.
“The match against West Indies cost us badly. Then their match against Sri Lanka got abandoned. After that, they lost the game to Australia which they should have won. These three matches made it very difficult for Pakistan. They themselves have got out of the tournament. Nobody else is responsible for their loss,” he said.
He, however, wants Sarfaraz Ahmed’s men to play for their pride against Bangladesh in their last group stage fixture at Lord’s Friday.
“All is not lost still. We have to play for our pride against Bangladesh. Pakistan have to make sure they don’t get humiliated and therefore they should play good cricket against Bangladesh,” he insisted.