The above wish expressed by Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq is seemingly just an attempt to pacify the supporters back there in their country that under the given situation where Pakistan has not yet qualified to play in the semi finals of the World Cup, Misbah has expressed their wish to play India again. Misbah has stated that Pakistan would not mind facing their arch rival India at the World Cup if the opportunity appears.
It looks little odd as Pakistanis are yet to face Australia in the quarter-final on Friday but instead of waiting for the outcome of that event, they are hoping to play India again.
Only the winner of Australia-Pakistan would face either India or Bangladesh, after becoming the winner of the other quarter-final. Therefore, the timing of Misbah is not at all justified.
Rather this appears to be a case of over-rating themselves as Team India has already thrashed them in all the last 6 encounters in the World Cup. Apart from the above, recently, Team India have already beaten Pakistan in the group stage with a pretty good margin of around 70 runs. So this becomes a perfect case of over statement on part of Misbah, rather funny up to some extent.
This can be described as hoping against hope, but Misbah said, “It will be another chance for us to go there with a positive frame of mind. We would take it like another opportunity for us to break the shackles as we have never won against India in the World Cup. We just have to go in with a positive frame of mind and self-belief and do our best”.
Pakistan is facing big problem ahead of their quarter-final clash against Australia with the ouster of injured pace bowler Mohammad Irfan. Misbah hoped that they have got enough to beat the hosts. He said, “Even though we have lost Mohammad Irfan, which is a big blow to us, we can do it. If we can beat South Africa which is one of the finest sides than we can do it against Australia.”
Analyising advantage of Team India he said, “They are the defending champions and they know that that is the biggest motivation for them and they have been playing in Australia for last three months and preparing for this World Cup and that has helped them. Obviously when you are the defending champions you got all the confidence in yourself and they are now quite an experienced team playing the last couple of years with the same squad and their captain Dhoni is also a very experienced campaigner. They have performed up to expectations so far in this World Cup.”
Misbah however emphasized that his team had regained self-belief after four consecutive wins. He concluded, “I can tell you this team wants to win it for our people. I also want to do it because it is my last one-day tournament. This tournament has always been important for us because people have high expectations from us since we won the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand before and we want to do it for them.”
In fact in all its fairness, Misbah should have waited till qualifying for the semis as there appears no logic in saying something hypothetical and far away from ground reality.