LAHORE: Former Pakistan leg-spinner and chief selector Abdul Qadir has lashed out at the Pakistan team for not performing up to the nation’s expectations while former fast-bowler Jalaluddin criticised the players for not playing like the defending champions that they were.
“I could see what was coming and had, therefore, called Australia my favourites against Pakistan for the semifinal as well as for the final,” Abdul Qadir told The Express Tribune. “It was an easy call as the Australians are true professionals and we are totally unpredictable.
“Pakistan dominated for almost 39 overs but lost in the final over of the match. The side, on paper, is great but the main factor and reason behind us losing was that the players do no perform up to expectations.”
Qadir also questioned Saeed Ajmal’s tactics in the match following Pakistan’s decision to place special emphasis on spin and going into the semifinal with a depleted fastbowling attack. “I don’t understand why Ajmal was bowling only outside the off stump. An off-spinner is supposed to spin into the right-hander and spin away from the left-hander but Ajmal kept on bowling the complete opposite.
“I think Aamer should’ve bowled the final over instead of Ajmal,” added Qadir who believed Aamer bowls the final overs with more success than any other bowler. “But the main thing was we lost after a good fight and we showed competitive spirit against a top side by scoring 190-plus and that is a good sign for our cricket.
“But in all, full marks to Australia. They were fully a determined group of hard workers and mentally very strong. Despite been under pressure throughout the match, they gave it their all to outplay Pakistan and that was a great achievement.” Former fast-bowler Jalaluddin, however, was more critical of the lack of cohesiveness between all departments of Pakistan cricket which, according to him, resulted in the loss despite a huge total.
“We didn’t play like champions,” he said. “Our batting was not up to the mark right from the start and that is the reason our performance through the tournament remained shaky. “Afridi was leading the team for the first time in a big tournament and he needs time to learn things.
“There is no doubt he is still learning but that is why I say we must maintain continuity in the captaincy, so its but unfair to criticise him alone. But due to the added burden, his bowling was definitely affected.”