Shoaib Akhtar loses cool over India’s fixing match allegations

Shoaib Akhtar lost his cool over allegations of India fixing their match against Sri Lanka yesterday. Here is a look at what the Rawalpindi Express said.

In their second Super 4 encounter, India defeated Sri Lanka to go to the Asia Cup 2023 final, however, given the first innings’ performance, it appeared that the hosts could just barely escape with a victory. With five wickets, Sri Lankan spinner Dunith Wellalage decimated India’s top order. Many fans claimed that India had “fixed the game” and was trying to lose the match on purpose when they were bowled out for 213 runs in messages sent to former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar. Akhtar, though, retaliated by denouncing the fans’ stupidity. If India had lost the game then it would have been virtually impossible for Pakistan to reach the Asia Cup finals.

Akhtar dismissed the fixing allegations

Akhtar in a video on his YouTube channel bashed at fans who were questioning India’s performance and alleging the match was fixed by India. Akhtar said, “I don’t know what you guys are doing. I am getting memes and messages saying ‘India has fixed the game’, that they are losing deliberately in order to eliminate Pakistan. Are you alright? They (Sri Lanka) are bowling their heart out.” Shoaib Akhtar even went on to applaud and praise the efforts made by the Sri Lankan team. Wellalage and Asalanka bowled their heart out. You saw that 20-year-old kid? He scored 43 runs and took 5 wickets. I am getting phone calls from India and other countries, saying India was losing deliberately.”

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Akhtar even questioned the crowd as to why India would lose when a win would guarantee their place in the final.

The Indian spinner Kuldeep Yadav received special acclaim from The Rawalpindi Express for his four wickets, which helped his team win the game. Akhtar said, “Why would they lose, tell me? They want to go through to the final. You end up making memes without any reason. It was a great fightback from India. The way Kuldeep played, it was massive. Look at Jasprit Bumrah, look at the fight while defending a small total.”

Shoaib Akhtar criticizes the Pakistan team

The Pakistani star went so far as to criticize Babar Azam’s squad for their ‘lack of fight’ in their most recent match against India.

Even the pacers Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah and Shaheen Afridi had their fitness questioned by him. He discussed how the number of matches played by Pakistani pacers in an ODI is rather low. Akhtar said, “Wellalage, a 20-year-old kid, is showing fight. He is batting and bowling, doing all he can. Our players (Pakistan) couldn’t show this fight. Our fast bowlers don’t play. When was the last they played 25-30 ODIs at a stretch? Then we expect Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah to deliver 10 overs and not get injured. I want the fight back from Pakistan. This was humiliating.” 

With India beating Sri Lanka yesterday they qualified for the finals. India will face Bangladesh in their final Super Four game while Pakistan and Sri Lanka will be involved in a virtual semi-final. If the match between Sri Lanka and Pakistan is washed out, then Sri Lanka would qualify with the same number of points as Pakistan but a superior Net Run Rate.