Pakistan’s all-rounder Shadab Khan said Thursday that his struggling teammates still think “miracles can happen” as the defending champions face a “do-or-die” battle to save their World Cup campaign.
Shadab Khan says Miracle Can Happen For World Cup 2023
The 1992 winners got off to a good start by beating the Netherlands and Sri Lanka. But they were badly beaten by India and Australia, and their last game was a disaster against their neighbors Afghanistan.
On Friday, they play South Africa, who has four wins in five games and hasn’t let their shocking loss to the Netherlands bother them. This will be another test of their skills.
“We have under-performed in all three departments — batting, bowling, and fielding,” stated Shadab.
“We have not played good cricket but have bounced back from such situations.”
Pakistan can still make it to the semi-finals with four games left in the group, but there isn’t much room for error. But they need to do more than just win on Friday. They also need to improve their -0.40 net run rate, which could be the difference between two teams in the race for 2 spots in the semi-finals. Shadab, who works for captain Babar Azam, said, “If you believe, miracles happen.”
“We have not played like we were playing before the World Cup but from tomorrow we have to start a winning streak.”
He said: “When you are in a do-or-die position then I think the pressure is less because you have nothing to lose.”
Shadab is one of many players on the Pakistan team who hasn’t quite hit their mark yet. The leg-spinner, who is 25 years old, has only taken two wickets at 90.00 and has made 74 runs in three games.
He didn’t play in the game against Australia, but he was brought back to play against Afghanistan. Shadab, who scored 40 in the loss to Afghanistan, said, “When you don’t do well, the criticism is fair, but every player has ups and downs in their performance, so I am sure I will get better.”
Shadab says they are over the shocking eight-wicket loss to Afghanistan in a game that was also played in Chennai. He is adamant that victory will probably stop the criticism that has been building steadily since their eighth loss in eight World Cup games to India.
“I always tell the players that if you are going to a tournament like this, you have to cut off from the social media,” stated Shadab.
“If you perform then everyone says that ‘he is doing so well’, but when you are not performing then the same people will say ‘he is not good enough’.”
He said: “It’s the mentality that when someone is not in the team, then they are the best and when someone is in the team they are the worst.”