Pakistan, who were at the top of the rankings in ODI cricket even a month ago, were being discussed as one of the favorites for the upcoming India World Cup. But Pakistan’s two-wicket loss to Sri Lanka and a massive 228-run loss to arch-rivals India in the just-concluded Asia Cup dampened those hopes.
This unpredictability is a regular feature of Pakistan. That is why the team often fluctuates between ups and downs. The injury of their important fast bowler Naseem Shah has come as a new blow to the team in the World Cup challenge. He was ruled out of the World Cup due to a shoulder injury.
However, team director Mickey Arthur is still optimistic about the team. He told news agency AFP, ‘Losing a talented player like Nasim is definitely a big shock. But the team made up of young and experienced bowlers is more capable and ready to take the challenge.’
Arthur said, ‘This group has enough ability to change the situation. It should be remembered that even before the Asia Cup we were at the top of the world rankings. We lost only two matches. This team has the skills to go ahead in any situation.’
Babar is optimistic that the country or the party of Pakistan will overcome the ongoing problems. He said, ‘Despite stumbling in the Asia Cup, our World Cup preparations are on the right track. ‘
In the upcoming World Cup, if Pakistan wants to keep their hopes alive at least to play in the semi-finals, then the middle order will have to give maximum to wicketkeeper-batters Mohammad Rizwan, Iftekhar Ahmed, Agha Salman and Saud Shakeel. Pakistan last played in the last four of the World Cup in 2011. Pakistanis have qualified to play.