Former Pakistani captain Misbah-ul-Haq has criticized Indian wicketkeeper-batter KL Rahul for his performance in the ODI World Cup 2023 final match against Australia. Speaking on a Pakistani-based channel, A Sports, Misbah stated that Rahul lacked trust in his fellow batters during the first innings of the game. He also mentioned that Rahul was overly focused on reaching the 250-run mark for his team, which ultimately proved to be a difficult task. Despite his criticism, Misbah praised Rahul’s ability to play against spin bowling.
Misbah acknowledged that Rahul had consistently displayed his proficiency in playing spin throughout the tournament. He commended Rahul’s skills in playing square of the wicket, in front of the wicket, and his excellent footwork. However, Misbah believed that Rahul’s approach in the final match was different. He suggested that Rahul may not have trusted the other batters in the team and was solely focused on achieving a team score of 250, which proved challenging.
In the match itself, India managed to score 240 runs in their allotted 50 overs. Captain Rohit Sharma contributed 47 runs in 31 balls, including four boundaries and three sixes, while Virat Kohli added 54 runs in 63 balls with four boundaries. KL Rahul’s knock of 66 runs in 107 balls, with one four, was also crucial for the team.
Australia’s Mitchell Starc was the standout bowler, taking three wickets for 55 runs. Captain Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood also bowled well, claiming two wickets each. Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell managed to take one wicket each.
During the chase, India had Australia struggling at 47/3. However, impressive innings from Travis Head, who scored 137 runs in 120 balls with 15 fours and four sixes, and Marnus Labuschagne, who added 58 runs in 110 balls with four boundaries, led Australia to a six-wicket victory.
Following the World Cup final, both teams will now face each other in a five-match T20I series, which is set to commence on Thursday in Visakhapatnam.
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