Cricket

Pakistan's ICC T20 World Cup 2024 Debacle: Versatile All-Rounders Is What The Doctor Orders

After making the semi-finals in 2021 and finals in the 2022 edition of the T20 carnival, Babar Azam’s men have crashed out of the league stage and will need to realign their cricketing blueprint in order to get back on track

(AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
Pakistan players huddle before the start of the ICC Men's T20 World Cup cricket match between Pakistan and Canada at the Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in Westbury, New York, Tuesday, June 11, 2024. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
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It is that moment under crunch situations, when you have been given no chance that you find the last bit of fire to keep fighting? Well, that is what it seemed like in the first half of the Pakistan-India game after they lost to the United States in their tournament opener. (More Cricket News)

However, that was not the case, and Pakistan served up yet another unpredictable template and none of their players really turned up to the T20 World Cup. All-rounders Shadab Khan and Imad Wasim hit a roadblock as well as plateau as their performance never raised. 

After making the semi-finals in 2021 and finals in the 2022 edition of the T20 carnival, Babar Azam’s men have crashed out of the league stage and will need to realign their cricketing blueprint in order to get back on track. 

Well, the all-rounders failing to produce the goods despite promising potential which was backed with time and patience highlighted the weight that the heavy-lifters like Shahid Afridi carried at the big stage. 

The rain gods ended Pakistan’s qualification hopes after the Florida game between USA and Ireland was washed out, however, it was not just rain that hindered their qualification but they themselves had put them in such a situation after suffering defeats against USA and India. 

Well, all-rounders are everywhere, but impactful all-rounders that elevate the team’s performance when the chips are down? Afridi’s legacy and execution of skill serves as a constant reminder for the same. He has been instrumental for Pakistan at the biggest stage of them all, be it with bat, ball, leadership qualities, tactical abilities, man-management and helping the team glue together and bring out their best. 

In Pakistan’s cricketing checklist, the pursuit for versatile players who can adapt to the situation, endure pressure, and deliver across all facets of the game will remain topmost priority - and that aptly highlights what Afridi did to the side over two decades. 

To sum it up, Pakistan’s World Cup journey may not have been a fruitful one, but it could be a journey that teaches them that climbing the cricketing mountains are not always picture perfect but are mostly going back to the drawing board and working when the lenses are off. 

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