ICC World Cup 2019: There is No Out and Out Favourites for Quadrennial Event Feels Shoaib Malik
Former Pakistan skipper Shoaib Malik who will be a vital member of the Pakistan side for the 2019 ICC World Cup feels that there are no out and out favourites for the quadrennial event. Shoaib Malik also dismissed criticism surrounding his indifferent form coming into the showpiece event in little more than a month’s time.
Shoaib Malik feels that in the World Cup all teams are strong and there won’t be any fluke. He is of the opinion that most of the visiting teams will struggle initially in English conditions and the rain and the overcast conditions might be an issue in the tournament.
“All teams at the World Cup are strong and there will be no fluke and no team is favourite. Everyone has to struggle and under English conditions, rainy weather may create problems for any team on a given day,” veteran all-rounder Shoaib Malik was quoted as saying by the Dawn.
The selection of Shoaib Malik in the World Cup squad has been questioned by many due to his below par performances with the bat in the recent past. However, Malik is confident of doing something special in the quadrennial event which in all likelihood will be his last ICC tournament.
The veteran all-rounder has been part of the Pakistan team for the last 15 years but has a relatively modest record to boast of. He has a moderate batting average of 35.12 in his ODI career. In the last year, Shoaib Malik has only scored 506 runs in 21 matches at a below-par average of 33.73. Meanwhile, Malik wasn’t happy after media and the former cricketers took a dig at him for non-technical reasons.
“I hope the critics will not carry out postpartum of the players’ [performances] during the World Cup on non-technical reasons. I have no complaint against anchors but against [some] former cricketers, who just focus on dropping or bringing a player on the basis of [their] liking and disliking,”said Malik, who as off-spinner has lost his utility of late as he bowled only one over in his last 11 ODI appearances since November 2018.
He continued, “I don’t follow Pakistani media, so what it says about me I don’t care. The big thing is that it is my last World Cup and I am in the team and I will try my best to give my best for the team as I always played for my team, not for myself.”
Meanwhile, Shoaib Malik had earlier predicted that Pakistan had a very good chance to win their 2nd World Cup if they play to their potential. The Men in Green were thrashed 5-0 by Australia in their last ODI series ahead of the World Cup which is slated to be played in England and Wales from 30th May. India and England will be two contenders for the World Cup. Australia after winning their last two series against India and Pakistan will also be confident of defending their trophy.
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