Pakistan’s fielding performance in the ongoing Cricket World Cup 2023 has become a subject of severe criticism. Their missteps on the field were glaring during the match against South Africa, resulting in a comical sequence of events that left cricket enthusiasts bemused.
The incident in question occurred when Temba Bavuma lightly tapped the ball towards mid-on and attempted a quick single. Salman Ali Agha , the fielder, successfully retrieved the ball, but a miscommunication with Mohammad Rizwan led to a misguided throw in the direction of the bowler’s end.
This throw missed its mark by a considerable margin, striking the bowler Mohammad Nawaz instead. The impact of the throw left Nawaz in visible discomfort, while the commentators found themselves unable to contain their laughter at the bizarre occurrence.
In the same match, South African left-arm spinner Tabraiz Shamsi took the spotlight by clinching four crucial wickets. His exceptional bowling performance contributed to Pakistan’s struggles, and they were eventually bowled out for a total of 270 runs.
Meanwhile, paceman Marco Jansen played a significant role in South Africa’s bowling efforts, securing three wickets for just 43 runs. Pakistan had won the toss and opted to bat, with hopes of rejuvenating their World Cup campaign with a victory.
Unfortunately, the Pakistan team’s journey in the tournament has been marred by inconsistency, having lost three out of their five matches. In contrast, South Africa has been in impressive form, winning four matches and suffering just one loss.
During the match against South Africa, middle-order batsman Saud Shakeel emerged as one of Pakistan’s standout performers, scoring a resilient 52 runs at a run-a-ball pace. Captain Babar Azam contributed a solid 50 from 65 balls, and Shadab Khan added an aggressive 43 from 36 balls to the team’s total.
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A bright spot for Pakistan was the partnership between Shakeel and Shadab, which yielded 84 runs for the sixth wicket off 71 balls. This partnership was particularly crucial in bolstering Pakistan’s innings, as it came after the dismissal of Babar Azam at 141 runs.
Notably, South Africa had previously suffered an unexpected defeat against the Netherlands, failing to chase a target of 246 in Dharamsala. This fact could offer some consolation to Pakistan, who may find inspiration in the knowledge that their opponents are not invincible.
However, Pakistan’s batting lineup faced early setbacks in the match against South Africa, with openers Abdullah Shafique and Imam-ul-Haq being dismissed for single-digit scores. It was only through partnerships between Azam and Rizwan, and later with Iftikhar Ahmed, that Pakistan managed to put up a competitive total.
Shamsi played a pivotal role in breaking these partnerships, ensuring that South Africa maintained the upper hand.
The match ultimately saw Pakistan’s innings derailed by the likes of Gerald Coetzee and Tabraiz Shamsi, and South Africa emerged victorious, continuing their strong campaign in the World Cup. Pakistan, on the other hand, faced yet another disappointing chapter in a tournament that has seen its fair share of ups and downs.