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Shoaib Akhtar Feels If He Had Played 2011 WC Semi-final Pakistan Had Won
By CricShots - Jun 11, 2022 4:28 pm
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Pakistan team agonized after India defeated them in the 2011 World Cup semi-final and it was even more for cricket legend Shoaib Akhtar. It is one of the biggest achievements of Team India under the captaincy of MS Dhoni, to win the trophy in front of their home crowd. But for Pakistan, they had lost a big opportunity as they lost to the eventual champions in the semi-final in Mohali, a loss that Akhtar admits that it still haunts him.

Shoaib Akhtar
Shoaib Akhtar

Despite being in the squad and being a bowler of his stature, Shoaib Akhtar was declared unfit for the big game in Mohali in the semi-final. Speaking to Sportskeeda, Akhtar recalled, “Mohali memory haunts me…that 2011 World Cup semi-final. They should have played me, they should have. It was completely unfair to the team management. I knew that I had just two matches left and I had this desire that at Wankhede the Pakistan flag is held high and the team plays the final.”

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He further added, “I knew that India was under immense pressure. The entire nation and the media were looking up to the team which means we were the underdogs. So, I believed that we shouldn’t have taken the pressure.”

Shoaib Akhtar said that he knew that the first 10 overs of the match would make a huge difference in the match and that had he been part of the team, he would haven’t let India to witness a good star as he would’ve dismissed their key batters in Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag early in the game.

sachin sehwag
India openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag

Elaborating the same, Shoaib Akhtar said, “They told me I was unfit. But I went inside, I bowled eight straight overs during the warm-up. If I played that match, no matter what the consequence would have been, I would have dismissed Sachin and Sehwag. India would have collapsed if Sachin and Sehwag were dismissed early. I was really really hurt.”

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He further explained, “So see that match for 5-6 hours and watch Pakistan lose from the dug-out…I am not the kind of person who cries but I’m the kind of person who breaks things. And I did break a few things in the dressing room because I was so sad, disappointed, and furious and so was the entire nation. I knew that all it mattered was those first 10 overs.”

Sachin Tendulkar played a knock of 85 and guided the team to 260 for nine before a collective effort from the bowlers folded Pakistan for just 231 runs. India eventually registered a win over Sri Lanka at the Wankhede Stadium to lift the elusive trophy after 28 years.

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