July 23, 2017

Waqar dubs Morgan's pitch criticism as 'lame excuse'

16 June 2017, 05:18 | Lucia Cruz

Waqar dubs Morgan's pitch criticism as 'lame excuse'

Waqar dubs Morgan's pitch criticism as 'lame excuse'

With a target of 212 to win, Pakistan started its innings. But just three days later Pakistan, the lowest-ranked side in a tournament featuring the world's top eight one-day global teams bounced back to defeat number one South Africa.

Pakistan has now reached the final of the tournament, where they will play against the victor of the second semi-final of the tournament between India and Bangladesh.

India plays Bangladesh in the second semi-final in Birmingham on Thursday. "We adapted to conditions, we knew if we restrict them we could easily chase it down.Every game is a knockout game and I told my boys to play their game and not worry about the result".

"I think he (Amir) has a little bit of back spasm", Sarfraz said.

Morgan's opposite number Sarfraz Ahmed hailed Pakistan's near ideal performance. "He's our best strike bowler".

"It's a big challenge jumping from venue to venue but we're going to have to do that with the World Cup so it's important for us to go through games like today (Wednesday) for our experience", added the former Irish star.

"All credit to Pakistan today, they were too good for us", Bayliss said. "It was a wonderful performance". "The credit goes to team management, Mickey Arthur and Captain Sarfraz Ahmed", he said while talking to a private news channel.

Asked how self-belief had been restored following a defeat by India greeted with widespread condemnation back home, Ahmed explained: "After the India match, we just motivated the guys".

"This is a very convincing win", she said expressing the hope that in the final Pakistan would once again produce a superb performance.

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When Chris Woakes' tournament ended after just two overs of the first match, because of a side strain, it seemed inevitable - especially after his quietly-impressive maiden Indian Premier League campaign - that England would miss him badly.

"It's a big frustration, because I think we've played some great cricket in this tournament - and we weren't anywhere close to it today. Now we are in the final".

Meanwhile England coach Trevor Bayliss reckoned a semi- final exit was consistent with an ODI ranking of fourth. "Yes, I will have that India Under-19 game in mind", he said.

On the prospect of his first Test as captain next month, Root added: "It is exciting".

The same England batsmen, who batted with flair and finesse through the tournament, came a cropper in a high stake semifinal.

Morgan had publicly highlighted the advantage Pakistan had in returning to a slow, low pitch they had played on only 48 hours earlier but there has been no official complaint to the International Cricket Council, which allocated three pitches per ground and oversees the preparation, due to an acceptance they were thoroughly outplayed.

It was Mohammad Hafeez who revelled in Pakistan's habitual tag before their victory over Sri Lanka on Monday.

For instance, we'll see players like Joe Root and Ben Stokes get even better, if you can believe it, and other players come into the reckoning.

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