2019 WC: Pakistan got it wrong against India right from start, says Waqar

Former Pakistan skipper Waqar Younis believes the Sarfaraz Ahmed-led side got it wrong right from the start against India during their group game in the 2019 World Cup which the Men in Blue had won by 89 runs by DLS method.

Waqar, revealed on Q20, GloFans’, a unique chat show, that Pakistan had a real good chance of ending their barren run against India in World Cups last year but poor decision making cost them dear with India eventually walloping Pakistan by a huge margin.

Waqar, who had been part of India vs Pakistan World Cup’s high-profile clash on four occasions, said, “I think Pakistan got it totally wrong against India in 2019 starting right from the toss. I think they were hoping that the pitch will do a lot more and they will get early wickets which will put India under pressure.”

“But, India had very seasoned openers and they did not really let the bowler settle. And, the pitch did not really do much and once they get going it was very difficult to stop them. They piled up so many runs to which Pakistan had no answers at all.”

“So, I think it was a silly mistake when, to begin with, winning the toss and asking India to bat because batting first on that pitch was the way to go and it did not really help Pakistan that day and India was too good, way too good,” he further said.

India maintain an envious record 7-0 against Pakistan in World Cups and has allowed the Indian fans to earn the bragging rights whenever both the teams have met in the mega event. Pakistani fans time and again have been left disappointed by their side and are waiting eagerly for the drought to end.

While there has been a lot of individual brilliance every time India and Pakistan locked horns in the World Cup, it was the innings of Sachin Tendulkar back in 2003 which is regarded as one of the best performances by an Indian against their arch-rivals.

In the group-stage match played on March 1, 2003 at Centurion in South Africa, the Pakistan team failed to defend a target of 274. India rode on Tendulkar’s brilliant 98 to chase down the target with more than four overs to spare.

Answering to Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary, Tendulkar’s biggest fan, on that particular innings, Waqar said, “Sachin Tendulkar’s innings against Pakistan in 2003 is hard to be described in words because he played so well and especially because India was under pressure on that day and we were good at bowling.”

“Probably even if you would ask Sachin about this, he might also say the same thing, that it was probably one of his best innings. The way he faced Shoaib Akhtar, Wasim Akram and me under pressure and the way he attacked and got early runs, I think it was amazing innings, one of the best innings I’ve seen.”

Responding to another fan’s question on regarding Sachin and what makes him stand apart from others, the former Pakistan fast bowler said, “Sachin Tendulkar is not only a great player, but a great human being also. I mean, keeping aside his Test records and One Day records, as a human being and because of his qualities, people of all ages like him.”

“He is a very humble man and everyone has seen his achievements and has seen him performing on the field. Overall, full marks to him for the way he has handled his career,” he added.