After England all-rounder, Ben Stokes, veteran Pakistan cricketer Mohammad Hafeez has also put question marks on Team India’s intent during their ICC World Cup 2019 match against England. Hafeez, however, didn’t blame the Indian team for losing the game purposely but said he didn’t see a match-winning intent from them.
“Ask any cricket fan; everyone will say intent to play with the spirit was not there. I don’t know about the results and who went out because of that. We played good cricket, and we were out because of our small mistakes. So I can’t blame any result for that,” Hafeez said during a video conference organized by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).
The Pakistani all-rounder stated that as a fan, he felt terrible for the captivating sport.
“But as a fan, if I see the match, I did not see the match-winning intent. I felt bad for the sport. The encounter factor was missing where both teams were playing to win. The mistakes we made, we failed to tick a few boxes in the 2019 World Cup. But as a fan, that is my opinion about that game,” Hafeez added.
Earlier, Stokes had stirred the social media when the excerpts from his new book ‘On Fire’ got viral on the internet. The Durham player had questioned MS Dhoni’s intent during India versus England game claiming that the former India captain prioritized on taking singles rather than going for boundaries.
“Arguably, the way MS Dhoni played when he came in with 112 runs needed from 11 overs was even stranger. He appeared more intent on singles than sixes. Even with a dozen balls remaining, India could still have won. There was little or no intent from him (Dhoni) or his partner Kedar Jadhav. To me, while victory is still possible you always go for broke,” Stokes had written in his book.
Stokes had also dropped his analysis on Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli’s partnership, saying that the duo took too much time to build a run-stand.
“The way Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli played was mystifying. I know that we bowled brilliantly well during this period, but the way they went about their batting just seemed bizarre. They allowed their team to get so far behind the game. They showed no desire to put any pressure back onto our team, content instead to just drift along, a tactic that was clearly playing into our hands,” the 29-year-old had further claimed.