Former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar admitted that rain saved Pakistan from conceding runs aplenty against India in the Super 4 clash between the two sides in Colombo on Sunday, September 10.
Akhtar was not at all happy with Babar Azam’s decision to bowl first after winning the toss. The legendary pacer made his way to Colombo to watch India and Pakistan in action however, rain halted the proceedings after a blistering start from Indian openers Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill.
Babar’s decision to bowl first backfired as Gill and Rohit stitched together a 121-run stand, thus helping the Indian team get off to the best possible start in the Super 4 clash.
Rohit was dismissed at 56, while Gill departed shortly afterwards after scoring 58. Virat Kohli and KL Rahul were trying to rebuild when the heavens opened up and the entire R. Premadasa Stadium was put under covers.
There is a reserve day in place for the Super 4 clash between India and Pakistan, and Akhtar gave his prediction, saying that play wouldn’t start again on Sunday.
He was looking forward to action on Monday, but the veteran admitted that rain saved the day for Pakistan after a poor start.
“Well. I don’t see this starting again. Colombo ki baarish is crazy," wrote Akhtar on X (formerly Twitter), sharing a video of himself as he took a sly dig at Babar about the ‘wise decision’ of not bowling first.
“Hey guys, it’s me Shoaib, match dekhne aaya tha, hum sare fans bhi wait kar rahe hai, Indians bhi Pakistani bhi. Lekin barish ne bacha liya humein, finally! Pehle India phass gya tha humare aagey, barish ne bacha lia. Aaj hum phas gaye the India ke samne, shukr hai barish ne bach lia. (I came to watch the match, we are all waiting, Indian and Pakistani fans. Rain saved us, rain saved India the other day, but today rain saved us!)," Akhtar was heard saying in the video.
“Hope match can finish off and we’ll be able to resume this time tomorrow, and by making a wise decision not to bowl first," the 48-year-old said.
Riding on the fifties from Rohit and Shubman, India reached a total of 147/2 after 24.1 overs when rain interrupted the proceedings, and it remains to be seen whether play can resume on Sunday.
According to the rules for the reserve day, play will resume from the same point where it stopped on Sunday if the match can’t begin again on Sunday, however, even if a 20-overs-per-side game can be played, a truncated game would be the first priority of the umpires instead of pushing play to the reserve day.