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  5. 2019 World Cup: Sarfaraz Ahmed believes miracles do happen and Pakistan can still qualify for semi-finals

2019 World Cup: Sarfaraz Ahmed believes miracles do happen and Pakistan can still qualify for semi-finals

Pakistan need to bat first, score 400 runs, dismiss Bangladesh for 84, and win by a margin of 316 runs but if they bat second, their chances of qualifying for the semi-finals will be none.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Published on: July 05, 2019 9:56 IST
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Pakistan captain believes miracles do happen and they can still qualify for semi-finals

Only a miracle can save Pakistan and take them to the semi-finals of the 2019 World Cup and captain Sarfaraz Ahmed is not giving up hope just yet.

Pakistan take on Bangladesh in their last league encounter at Lord's on Friday and only a 316-run win will take them to the last four. The margin has become outrageous after hosts England beat New Zealand by 119 runs on Wednesday and confirmed their spot in the semi-finals.

The equation for Pakistan now is simple: They need to bat first, score 400 runs, dismiss Bangladesh for 84, and win by a margin of 316 runs. It's a victory margin that has never been achieved in the history of one-day cricket before and they need to rewrite the books to make it happen.

However, if Bangladesh bat first, then Pakistan are out even before the game begins.

But, Sarfaraz believes no matter how hard it is, they can still give their best and try to qualify as the last-placed team from the league stages.

"We will do our best to win the last game as well to end on a high and we will do our best to achieve that but we need to be realistic, but if Allah helps then miracles can happen," he said.

"It's like you score 600, 500, 400 on a pitch then you think you can get the other team out for 50 and then win by a 316-run margin. If you think realistically, then we can only try. 

"But the first real thing will be to win the match."

"If you look at the tournament then, realistically, the tournament is of 280-300 totals," said Sarfaraz.

"If you look at the pitches, they were not for free-scoring. They were tough for batting with spin and the ball was not coming onto the bat." 

Pakistan's journey so far in this World Cup has been similar to that of 1992, except for the knockout stage where they don't seem to enter.

After registering back-to-back defeats against Australia and India, Pakistan came back strongly and registered three consecutive victories, all in must-win games, against South Africa, New Zealand and Afghanistan. However, in order to make it to the last four, they needed England to lose one of their last two matches, which didn't happen.

Even if Pakistan get knocked out of the tournament, they can be proud of the way they came back strongly after receiving some really harsh criticism, both from the fans and former cricketers after their defeat to India.

Bangladesh, on the other hand, came out with a spirited performance in this World Cup. They played like one of the contenders to win the trophy and gave their opponents a run for their money in almost all their matches, except against England when the hosts posted a total in excess of 380.

The performance of the entire unit, especially that of Shakib Al Hasan, is something which the Bangla Tigers can surely be proud of.

So, they would want to end their World Cup campaign on a high and defeat Pakistan in their last game at the Home of Cricket. 

(With inputs from IANS)

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