Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh has slammed former Pakistani batsman Basit Ali, who claimed that India will deliberately lose their matches to try and eliminate Pakistan from the ongoing Cricket World Cup.
After their 89-run defeat against India, the Pakistan team has come strong winning their last three games. The men in green are keen on winning their next encounter against Bangladesh. There are hoping to repeat the same trick as happened in the 1992 World Cup with many things that have happened the same way. But India’s defeat against England has increased the complications for Pakistan to get through to the knockouts.
However, if New Zealand can beat England in their next fixture, it takes Pakistan through to the semi-final if they beat Bangladesh in their last group-stage fixture.
Pakistan is currently on the fifth spot of the table, fighting with New Zealand, England, and Bangladesh for the remaining three semi-final spots. On the other hand, if India wins any of their remaining two matches against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, they’d book a guaranteed place in the semi-finals. But, if England beats New Zealand in their next fixture, it will knock Pakistan out of the tournament. Speaking to Pakistan-based news channel Ary News, former cricketer Basit Ali claimed that India will deliberately play some cricket with a low intent just to ensure that Pakistan gets knocked out right before the knockouts.
Harbhajan Singh came to rescue by giving an interview to India Sports, where the legendary off-spinner slammed the controversial statements made by Basit Ali by replying: “What makes him say that? Is he stupid? I don’t know what is he smoking, seriously! He’s got to be on a different planet in order for him to talk ill like this. That’s probably the way they have played their cricket and that’s how they see the game,”
Ali had previously claimed that New Zealand deliberately lost their last league match against Pakistan in the 1992 World Cup to play in their own backyard, after knowing this Harbhajan Singh urged former Pakistani skipper and current Pakistan PM Imran Khan to ‘fix’ Basit Ali: “I think Imran Bhai should fix him now. I think he needs to be fixed because you can’t put your team down like this by saying that ’92 was fixed and now 2019 is fixed as well,”
India is almost through for the semi-finals, with one win in the remaining two games would ensure that. The main challenge and motive of the Indian team have to be to end as the table toppers. While Pakistan will hope New Zealand to beat England and themselves to look through Bangladesh to slam the number 4 spot of Knockouts.