“My view was that as long as Fakhar was there, we could have even chased 450,” the Pakistan captain said. “When he plays innings like this, we win 90% of the games. After every six I told him, ‘don’t force the issue.’ He said it was fine, but then he ignored me and started hitting sixes anyway. So I told him I said to him, ‘Do what you want, but don’t go out.’ [It’s] one of the best entries I’ve ever seen.”
While the prospect of rain had been hanging around all day, it had not materialized until midway through the second inning. New Zealand piled up 401, their second-highest ODI total, before a brief rain interruption delayed the start of the chase. But according to Babar, Pakistan approached the chase with the belief that the game would go down to the wire.
“We didn’t have rain in mind at all,” he said. “But the clouds suddenly appeared, and then we started calculating the DLS and we wanted to stay that way at all times. We were trying to keep the wickets in hand and I was trying to go deep. Fakhar was using the short boundary while I held one end up and we We made sure not to let the speed of execution get out of control.
“Of all the wickets we have played in this World Cup, this was the best,” Fakhar said. “It was clear from the second over that the wicket was excellent for batting. If Southee and Boult are not swinging the ball, you know the wicket is excellent for batting. After four overs or so, any little swing there was also It evaporated, and that gave me even more freedom.
“This is a World Cup innings, so it might be one of my favourites. It still doesn’t beat the 193 I scored at the Wanderers, because it’s the fastest wicket in the world and Asian players struggle there, but this innings and the “The situation in which I scored my runs made me very happy.”