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World Cup 2023: ‘Predictably unpredictable’, Aakash Chopra on Green Shirt’s batting collapse

World Cup 2023: ‘Predictably unpredictable’, Aakash Chopra on Green Shirt’s batting collapse
  • PublishedOctober 6, 2023

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Pakistan´s Mohammad Rizwan  (left) is clean bowled by Netherlands Bas de Leede; former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra. — AFP/X/File
Pakistan´s Mohammad Rizwan  (left) is clean bowled by Netherlands’ Bas de Leede; former Indian cricketer Aakash Chopra. — AFP/X/File

Cricket commentator and former Indian player Aakash Chopra, taking a dig at Pakistan’s batting collapse in their first match against the Netherlands termed Green Shirts’ performance as “predictably unpredictable”.

Taking to X — formerly known as Twitter — Chopra trolled Pakistan’s batting performance after the Green Shirts’ top three batters returned to the pavilion in the first 10 overs.

“Pakistan is batting like Pakistan, predictably unpredictable,” wrote the former Indian cricketer.

Pakistan lost openers Zaman (12) and Imam (15), along with Azam (5), in the first 10 overs with less than 50 runs on the board.

However, after losing three important wickets, Mohammad Rizwan and Saud Shakeel built an astounding 120-run partnership to give their side a much-needed breakthrough.

Rizwan lost his wicket after scoring 68 off 75 while Saud, who was making his World Cup debut, scored an important knock of 68 runs off 52, which included 10 boundaries, with an impressive 130.77 strike rate.

However, after the two batters departed for the pavilion, the Green Shirts lost Iftikhar Ahmed soon enough and were 188-6.

But, a late 64-run stand between Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan helped the Green Shirts cross the 250-run mark.

Earlier in the day, the Netherlands after winning the toss asked Pakistan to bat first.

Dutch skipper Scott Edwards said he opted to bowl first as he believes it would be easier to bat under lights here at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad.

Edwards, while talking at the toss, said that he was hopeful of a good performance against the Green Shirts because they’ve played Pakistan a lot in recent years.

On the other hand, Pakistani skipper Babar Azam said that they will be looking to set a target between 290-300.

This is the seventh time Pakistan and the Netherlands are facing off each other in an ODI. The two sides have faced off six times in the format, their first meeting in the 1996 iteration of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, and Pakistan have come out victorious on each occasion.

The Netherlands, the only Associate side in the World Cup, have Roelof van der Merwe, Aryan Dutt, and Saqib Zulfiqar as their spin options.

Playing XI

Pakistan: Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf

Netherlands: Vikramjit Singh, Max O’Dowd, Colin Ackermann, Bas de Leede, Teja Nidamanuru, Scott Edwards (wk, c), Saqib Zulfiqar, Logan van Beek, Roelof van der Merwe, Aryan Dutt, Paul van Meekeren

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