WC2019: With 6 crucial games remaining, can Pakistan make it to semi-finals?

Unpredictable, mercurial and unbelievable are some of the words commonly used to describe Pakistan cricket. Our team can perform like school boys in one match and put on a record defying performance in the next. Be it the 1992 World Cup, the 2017 Champions Trophy, or their remarkable performance against England in the ongoing World Cup, Pakistan seems to summon the help of some higher power to script a fairy tale-like turnaround for them when least expected. The road ahead After being demolished by West Indies in their opening game of the World Cup, most of us were very sceptical about ...

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They don’t call Pakistan ‘unpredictable’ for nothing

If in the match against West Indies Pakistan played in reverse gear, then their match last night against England saw them shift into fifth gear. After Pakistan lost the toss and were sent in to bat, I was a bit apprehensive about our chances. I felt that the only way we could beat England was if we bowled first, given that the strong English batting line up can chase down any total. And I was almost proven right. Lose 4 nil to the Worlds No1 team coming into the World Cup. Get demolished by a team that had to qualify for the ...

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A day to forget: Can the ‘unpredictable’ Pakistan turn it around?

Pakistan’s encounter with the West Indies yesterday marked the advent of Pakistan’s World Cup campaign. While fans of Pakistan cricket are always wary of the threat the West Indies pose, most people expected Pakistan to emerge victorious. This, however, couldn’t be further from the truth. To call it a ‘game’ would be undervaluing the effort by the West Indies, and overvaluing Pakistan’s performance. Pakistan was totally outclassed, with the match virtually ending within the first 10 overs, courtesy of some great bowling by the West Indies, coupled with some atrocious Pakistani batting. Pakistan were sent in to bat on a ...

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After 14 long years, will Liverpool finally lift the Champions League trophy?

The 2019 Champions League final in Madrid will be reminiscent of the English final of 2008 when Manchester United beat Chelsea in Moscow to lift the trophy. However, this time around, Liverpool are contesting for their sixth European crown and only their north London rivals, Tottenham Hostpur, stand in their way. It may come as a surprise to many that Mauricio Pochettino’s men have qualified for the final of Europe’s biggest club competition but there is no denying that the Lilywhites have been in a sublime form this season. On the other hand, Jurgen Klopp’s side have reached the ...

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The night before Pakistan’s World Cup game

After four years of waiting and 27 years of reliving our past glory, now the moment to repeat history is finally here. I lie in my bed, engulfed by the darkness and silence. Sleep should be around the corner but it’s not. I can hear the clock ticking. Each tick is a second closer to the start of Pakistan’s World Cup campaign and that will keep me awake for the rest of the night. I am one of ‘those’ fans. Pakistan cricket has beguiled us for years and our love affair with the World Cup began in 1975. Our foray ...

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Will your favourite team lift the World Cup?

Based on the teams and the roster of players, it looks like the cricket World Cup is going to be super exciting. The team which has the right combinations and resources to play on different pitches and in varying weather conditions will be the one to lift the trophy. So if it’s seaming and swinging, teams will need pacers that can exploit the conditions to their fullest, and if it’s a dry surface, they’ll have to rely on their spinners to provide the vital breakthroughs. This year, the format of the World Cup is such that a team may win ...

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Is Babar Azam a ‘selfish’ batsman?

Pakistan have now lost 10 consecutive ODI matches. A 4-0 drubbing against England, the top ranked ODI team, is not surprising as I had predicted a 4-1 defeat in my previous blog. We were below par in all three departments: bowling, batting and fielding. But many positives have also emerged from this series. The highest run-scorer for Pakistan in the series was Babar Azam. He scored 277 runs at an average of 55.40 and a strike rate of 99.64. However, did those figures help the team in winning any game? If not, then why so? While Azam’s classy batting is very pleasing ...

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The age of Sana Mir in a man’s world

We have entered an age where women can be leaders in every field and research shows that women are outperforming men in many professions. Organisations are encouraging the employment of female bosses because 40 years of research have proved that women are better managers. The trends are also changing in a country like Pakistan, where more and more women are being given their rights and the liberty to choose their own profession. Yet, it seems that the field of sports still remains off-limits for many women in Pakistani families. But I believe that this mind-set won’t last long because we ...

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Wahab Riaz selected for World Cup squad – but is that a wise decision?

The inclusion of Wahab Riaz in Pakistan’s World Cup squad has triggered mixed views among Pakistani fans. The ones not in favor of Riaz have some solid reasons for their strong opinions. Bearing in mind Riaz’s track record, he is a gamble. If he plays well, great. And if he doesn’t, we’re doomed. Does he bowl fast? Yes. Is he accurate? Not particularly. He becomes more and more unreliable as the pressure mounts. Time and time again, we have seen him receive some serious punishment at the hands of batsmen. Pakistan finalises make-up of World Cup squadhttps://t.co/I4xFbvC5sF #WeHaveWeWill pic.twitter.com/tTdA8iC6Pj — Pakistan Cricket ...

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Why selecting Mohammad Amir and Asif Ali for the World Cup is the right move

Given that there are millions of supporters of the Pakistan cricket team, there are bound to be millions of variations of Pakistan’s World Cup squad floating around on social media. Everyone has a different personality, and so each individual will tailor the Pakistani line-up according to their liking. The recent report that Mohammad Amir and Asif Ali are set to be included in Pakistan’s World Cup squad has thrown these predictions into a flux. Although not officially confirmed by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) yet, I believe that their inclusion is an absolute must and will prove to be ...

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