Babar: ‘We were not up to the mark’

India
Babar Azam reckoned not utilising the batting powerplay well enough and then playing too many dot balls in the middle overs were the main reasons behind Pakistan not being able to chase down 120 in their T20 World Cup 2024 match against India in New York.

“In our mind, we wanted to play normally, utilise the first six overs in the batting and [if we had done that] we win,” Babar said after Pakistan’s six-run defeat. “But one wicket down and we were not up to the mark in the first six overs. We were targeting like 40 to 45 runs in the first six overs, but we did not capitalise properly and yes after the ten overs also we made the same mistake.”

Having restricted India to 119, Pakistan did not lose too many wickets upfront but also did not score many runs. They managed 35 for 1 in the powerplay and then moved 72 for 2 in 12 overs. Then, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya orchestrated a collapse. Hardik got rid of Fakhar Zaman with an excellent short of a length ball, before Bumrah breached Mohammad Rizwan’s stumps with the first ball of his second spell.

In the middle overs (6.1 to 15.6), Pakistan played 29 dot balls and scored 50 runs while losing three wickets.

“We bowled well after ten overs and we would have taken 120. It’s a better total here. In the batting, we went run-a-ball but unfortunately, but we lost back-to-back wickets and then there were too many dot balls,” Babar said. “Tactics were simple, play normally, just rotate the strike and just try and play one boundary and be normal…get five or six an over. But in that period we had too much dot balls, the pressure was on us. And we lost back-to-back two to three wickets.”

Having suffered back-to-back defeats to start this World Cup, Pakistan now find themselves struggling to make it out of the first round. Babar said they will just look to win their last two Group A games, and then take it from there.

“Obviously we have to win the last two matches. We will sit and discuss our mistakes but we are looking forward to the next two matches.”

Pakistan play Canada on June 11 at this venue and then finish the group stage against Ireland on June 16 in Lauderhill.

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