Indian Sports Analysts: Pakistan Tore Us Apart

Pakistan's 10-wicket triumph over India in their recent T20 World Cup match has made history. It's the country's first ever win against its neighbor in 13 World Cup matches. It is also historic because the Indian bowlers failed to take even a single Pakistani wicket.  Pakistani opening batsmen Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan romped to an easy 10-wicket victory by scoring 152 runs in 17.5 overs without any losses. Batting first, India lost 7 wickets to reach 151 runs total in 20 overs. Since this India-Pakistan encounter on October 24, 2021, Pakistan has gone on to win its second match against New Zealand by 5 wickets. 

Babar Azam and Virat Kohli

In a rare honest analysis seen on India's ZeeTV, the comments by retired Indian cricketer Mohammad Kaif and sports journalist Harpal Singh Bedi summed up the results as follows: 

Mohammad Kaif: "Shameful defeat for India"..."No amount of praise (for Pakistan) is enough"... "They (Pakistan) have done it without practice matches..New Zealand pulled out...England cancelled tour"..,..  "Dew factor hurt us (India) because we failed to take early wickets before dew became a factor" ..."we got no wickets...we were completely flat on our back (Charo khane chit)....."Babar Azam had a complete plan...all 11 players pre-announced....field first..etc" "Shaheen's bowling was amazing"

Harpal Singh Bedi: "They tore us apart....they exposed us...we were completely dismantled" .... "Pakistan did the same in the Champions Trophy Final in 2017"..."Dew factor has no meaning".. "Never underestimate other teams" ..."Always respect the opponent" ...."Pakistan took early wickets...essential in T20" ..."Mauka Mauka is nonsense!"
For the uninitiated, "Mauka Mauka" is an Indian ad that mocks Pakistan for its string of losses against India in World Cup matches. Pakistan has done better against India in matches played outside of the World Cup. The two sides have played a total of 200 times. Pakistan has won 87 matches compared to India's 70 victories. In Test matches and ODIs Pakistan has won more matches than India, although India has won six of the nine T20 International between the two sides.    
It is indeed refreshing to see such candid commentary by Indian analysts on the emotion-filled India-Pakistan T20 encounter in Dubai, UAE.  Here's a video of the ZeeNews show:

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Comment by Riaz Haq on October 28, 2021 at 9:16pm

#India Seems Determined to Lose to #Pakistan in More Than #Cricket. Arrests of #Muslims celebrating the Pakistani team’s win underscore how #Hindu nationalists are self-sabotaging. by @dhume #Hindutva #Islamophobia_in_india #Modi https://www.wsj.com/articles/india-pakistan-islamist-cricket-t-20-w... via @WSJOpinion

Against this backdrop, the last thing India needs is unrest in its 200-million-strong Muslim population, the second largest in the world behind Indonesia. Instability in India would have wide-ranging geopolitical implications. It would signal weakness to Beijing and unreliability to those in Washington who look to India as a democratic counterweight to Chinese autocracy. Islamic extremists could also use indiscriminate crackdowns on Indian Muslims to attract recruits, further destabilizing the region.
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The last thing most Indians want is to strengthen Pakistan, but India’s turn to increasingly hard-line Hindu nationalism is likely to do just that. An apparently growing tendency among Indians to refuse to distinguish between ordinary Muslims and dangerous Islamists will open India to instability and national-security threats—a point underscored by, of all things, the T-20 cricket World Cup.

After the Pakistani team beat India on Sunday, police in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh arrested seven Muslims for allegedly celebrating Pakistan’s victory. They face a variety of charges, including sedition, according to the state’s chief minister. In Indian-administered Kashmir, students and staff from two medical colleges face criminal charges under a harsh antiterrorism law for allegedly cheering the Pakistani cricket win. Many of India’s illiberal laws predate the rise of Hindu nationalism—some date back to colonial rule—but under the ruling Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party these laws are increasingly used against Muslims deemed insufficiently patriotic.

India is already caught in a fraught geopolitical environment. Chinese troops have squatted for more than a year on territory that India also claims, and a military buildup along the two countries’ disputed 2,200-mile border shows few signs of receding. The Taliban victory in Afghanistan—backed by covert support from the Pakistani army—boosts radical Islam across the region. A spate of terrorist attacks in the Indian part of Kashmir over the past four weeks raises fears that the restive region is headed for a new bout of instability.

Violent anti-blasphemy protests and killings by the Pakistani Taliban underscore Pakistan’s continued lurch toward radicalization. Even Bangladesh, which has been a bastion of relative religious moderation over the past decade, is showing signs of strain. Earlier this month, violent Muslim mobs vandalized roughly 17 temples and killed at least two people during the Hindu festival of Durga Puja.

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It’s also very much in Pakistan’s interest to exploit India’s domestic fault lines. In a video shortly after the cricket game, Pakistan’s Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed hailed his team’s win as a victory for Islam. He claimed that the win was celebrated by Muslims around the world, including those in India.

Hindu nationalists took the bait—the minister’s video went viral in India. They also shared clips on social media of Indian Muslims allegedly celebrating Pakistan’s cricket victory, but it’s hard to say if these videos represent a widespread pattern, and if many of them are even genuine. Since Mr. Modi’s election in 2014, a vast network of Hindu nationalist websites, social media accounts and pro-government TV channels—not known for factual rigor—have taken to vilifying Indian Muslims.

Comment by Riaz Haq on October 30, 2021 at 12:12pm

Pakistan, chasing 148 to win, were well placed at 122-3 in the 17th over when Afghan leg-spinner Rashid Khan turned the match on its head, bowling Babar Azam out at the Pakistani captain's score of 51.

https://youtu.be/evbMYIow3Jw

In the next over, Naveen-ul-Haq conceded just two runs and dismissed veteran Shoaib Malik for 19.

Shadab Khan came in for the last ball of the over and guided a shot into space, but Asif refused a single, taking the fate of the match in his hands.

When Asif Ali came to the crease, Pakistan's score was 122/4 at the beginning of the 18th over. Pakistan were 26 runs short of the 148-run target set by Afghanistan in T20 World Cup Group 2 match.

Asif hit Afghanistan's Karim Janat for 4 huge sixes in the 19th over.

It’s the end that mattered, Asif says. The shorter boundary was picked by Asif. And it worked.

“I look at the situation, and which bowlers are left. You look at the field placements,” Asif adds.

Pakistan WINS!

AS IF Afghanistan had a chance

That’s what the Pakistan fans will be thinking. Asif Ali, who finished off New Zealand the other day, does it again.

6,0,6,0,6,6

Asif Ali: 25 runs off seven balls.

It’s over.

In Pakistan's second group match, New Zealand looked strong after setting Pakistan a target of 135 and restricting their scoring for much of the reply, but Asif changed the dynamic in the end with three big sixes as Pakistan secured their second successive win with eight balls remaining.

Comment by Riaz Haq on October 31, 2021 at 6:54pm

Twitter takes Team India to the cleaners after loss to New Zealand

https://www.indiatoday.in/trending-news/story/twitter-takes-team-in...

Disappointed in the men in blue, Indians took to the blue bird on Sunday evening to vent their frustration at India’s fading chances in the T20 Cricket World Cup.


The Indian team registered its second loss in the cricket world cup on Sunday when they were defeated by New Zealand. The Kiwis beat India by eight wickets with 33 balls to go in a match that was not nail-biting, to say the least.

Earlier, on October 24, India lost to Pakistan by ten wickets in their much-awaited first match in the tournament. Indian fans, for whom cricket is much more than just a sport, had pinned all their hopes on the game against New Zealand. But very soon, it seemed clear that this one too was not going to end well.

The bitter taste of defeat, if nothing else, gave rise to some pretty funny tweets.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 1, 2021 at 9:00pm

India's BCCI To Squeeze Pakistan Super League

India's BCCI wants to force foreign players to choose between IPL and PSL to hurt Pakistan Super League. Earlier this year, BCCI issued threats against foreign players who had signed up for Kashmir Premier League (KPL). Analysts believe that BCCI is very likely to take a much harder line against Pakistan. A recent development that supports this view is that Jay Shah, son of PM Narendra Modi's right-hand man Amit Shah, is the new head of the Indian Cricket Board.

https://youtu.be/CIcG14ROeNI

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 2, 2021 at 5:25pm

In-form #Pakistan beat #Namibia . With 4 wins in as many games (vs #Afghanistan, #India, #NZ & Namibia ) Pakistan now tops Group 2 with 8 points. This will be Pakistan's 5th semi-final in #T20WorldCup history -- the most by any #cricket team.

https://sports.yahoo.com/form-pakistan-seal-semi-final-205710079.ht... via @Yahoo


Pakistan became the first team to reach the Twenty20 World Cup semi-finals after beating Namibia by 45 runs, with brilliant half centuries from Mohammad Rizwan and skipper Babar Azam in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

Rizwan finished with a slow-to-fast 50-ball 79 not out while Babar notched his 23rd Twenty20 international fifty with a 49-ball 70 to lift Pakistan -- who won the toss and batted -- to 189-2 in their 20 overs.

Namibia tried their best to match their opponents, with David Wiese notching 43 not out and Craig Williams scoring 40, but Pakistani bowlers never allowed them a free hand as they managed 144-5 in 20 overs.

With four wins in as many games, Pakistan became the first side to reach the last four from Group 2. This will be their fifth semi-final in Twenty20 World Cup history -- the most by any team.

South Africa also remained in the hunt for a semi-final place, beating a hapless Bangladesh by six wickets after bowling them out for a mere 84 runs.

South Africa are now second in Group 1 with six points in four matches, two points behind England who have eight in four. Australia also have six points from four matches but are third on net run-rate.

Pakistan were a better side on Tuesday.

Williams knocked five boundaries and a six before he holed out to spinner Shadab Khan while Wiese smashed two sixes and three boundaries in his 31-ball knock.

Opener Stephan Baard scored 29.

Babar said Pakistan went with a different plan, batting first.

"It was a different plan today, wanted that opening partnership to go deep and it worked for us," said Babar. "Rizwan was superb in the final few overs."

- 'Same intensity' -

The Pakistan skipper was confident his team will keep the winning momentum.

"Everything has gone according to plan, we're looking forward to the semi-finals and playing our cricket with the same intensity."

Namibia skipper Gerhard Erasmus admitted his side was outplayed.

"We knew from the start that Pakistan are of high quality, they look like title contenders, we knew we'd have to compete hard and I thought we did that for quite a while but in the end it was not enough," said Erasmus.

Rizwan and Babar were the stars once again, like they were in Pakistan's win over arch-rivals India, which gave them a kick-start to the event.

The pair added 113 for the first wicket after Pakistan were slow out of the blocks, scoring just 59 in the first ten overs but ended with a flurry in the next ten, taking 130 runs.

Veteran Mohammad Hafeez scored a brisk 16-ball 32 not out with five boundaries.

Pakistan's total is the second-highest in this tournament, behind Afghanistan's 190-4 against Scotland in Sharjah.

Babar hit seven boundaries before he holed out to Wiese in the 15th over while Fakhar Zaman was smartly caught by keeper Zane Green for five.

Rizwan reached his tenth half century with a pulled six off Wiese in the 19th over before hitting four boundaries and a six to take 22 off JJ Smit's final over.

Rizwan's knock included eight fours and four sixes.

Pakistan next face Scotland in their last match in Sharjah on Sunday. Namibia will meet New Zealand, also in Sharjah two days earlier.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 3, 2021 at 2:24pm

When PM Imran Khan picked Ramiz Raja to head PCB recently, Pakistan's head coach Misbahul Haq and bowling coach Waqar Younus quit. Ramiz has since brought in British-Pakistani cricketer Saqlain Mushtaq as head coach, veteran Australian batsman Mathew Hayden as batting coach and retired South African seamer Vernon Philander as bowling coach.

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https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/matthew-hayden-vernon-philander-...

Former Australia opener Matthew Hayden and former South Africa seamer Vernon Philander have been added to the Pakistan team's coaching staff for the upcoming T20 World Cup in the UAE. The new PCB chairman, Ramiz Raja, announced the appointments on Monday, citing the aggression and quality of the players as defining reasons for their hiring.

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https://www.sportskeeda.com/cricket/news-t20-world-cup-2021-13-year...

Ahead of the Pakistan cricket team's third T20 World Cup 2021 match tonight, the team's interim head coach Saqlain Mushtaq bowled a few deliveries to captain Babar Azam in the training sessions.

Saqlain Mushtaq retired from international cricket in the 2004-05 season and played his last domestic game in 2008. But even 13 years after his retirement, the former Pakistan off-spinner looked in full flow while bowling to Babar Azam in the nets.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) shared a compilation video of Saqlain Mushtaq's deliveries to Babar Azam on their official social media handles today.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 3, 2021 at 4:19pm

#T20WorldCup: #Indian fans are jailed for celebrating #Pakistan's win. Several #Muslims in India have been arrested or detained for supporting Pakistan in the recent match - raising fresh concerns about freedom of speech in the world's largest democracy. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-59130556

Like millions of others around the world, Nafeesa Attari was glued to her screen as India played Pakistan in their opening match of the T20 World Cup.

The schoolteacher from the northern Indian city of Udaipur watched as Pakistan won the match by 10 wickets in what was a clinical and emphatic win.

Days later she was arrested and held in a police cell. Her apparent crime: her WhatsApp status celebrating Pakistan's victory.

She is among several Muslims in India who have been arrested or detained for supporting Pakistan in the recent match - raising fresh concerns about freedom of speech in the world's largest democracy. Observers argue that these arrests are the latest weapon in the governing Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) agenda to target Muslim minorities, a charge the government strongly refutes.

Pakistan hammer India by 10 wickets to claim famous win
"Jeeeet gayeeee… We wonnn," Ms Attari wrote, over an image of some of the team's players in her WhatsApp status.

Her post was spotted by one of her students' parents, who sent it to others before it went viral on the messaging service.

Ms Attari was fired from her teaching job, and arrested under a section of the Indian Penal Code, which criminalises "assertions prejudicial to national integration".

In an interview with a local TV channel, she appeared visibly distressed as she apologised for causing offence.

"Someone messaged me [replying to my status] and asked if I was supporting Pakistan. As the message had emojis and there was a playful atmosphere, I said yes", she said.

"This doesn't mean I support Pakistan. I am an Indian, I love India."

Having secured bail, she is back home with her husband and young child, and is fighting the charges.

"What the police have done is absolutely wrong. If someone makes a mistake or if you don't agree with someone, that's not a crime or anti-national", her lawyer Rajesh Singhvi said. "This is against the constitution and our laws."

Rajendra Parmar, a member of the hardline Hindu nationalist group Bajrang Dal, had reported Ms Attari to the police.

"These people should go to Pakistan. You're living in India, earning here but you're celebrating their win," he told the BBC.

Mr Parmar said he had no regrets about making the complaint. "This should be a [lesson] for her. She's a teacher in a school. What kind of education will she give those children?"

His comments cut deep into the visceral hostility many in India and Pakistan feel towards each other, ever since the two nations were created after the partition of British India in 1947.

And relations are particularly tense in Indian-administered Kashmir, where an insurgency against Indian rule has been under way since the late 1980s.

A group of medical students in Kashmir have also been charged - under a strict anti-terror law - for allegedly rooting for the Pakistani cricket team.

In a video which has surfaced online, a man, allegedly former BJP lawmaker Vikram Randhawa, can be heard saying the students should be "skinned alive" and have their degrees and citizenship cancelled for raising pro-Pakistan slogans on Indian soil.

Mr Randhawa has been charged by police for hate speech, and has been reprimanded by the BJP, which has asked him to apologise within 48 hours for these remarks.

While the party is distancing itself from the use of such severe language, other senior members of the BJP have condemned those supporting Pakistan, with some saying it should be considered a crime.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 13, 2021 at 10:40am

Four #Muslims booked in #Indian state of #UP for #sedition over hoisting ‘Pakistan flag’; #Police found no #Pakistan flag was found during a search of the two houses. #Modi #Hindutva #BJP #Islamophobia_in_india https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/lucknow/four-booked-in-up-... via @IndianExpress

Gorakhpur SSP Vipin Tada said the police were investigating the matter. Also, they were verifying the writing in Urdu found on one of the flags handed over to them.

Police said businessmen Talim, Pappu, Ashiq and his brother Asif were booked after an FIR was lodged under IPC Section 124-A at Chauri Chaura police station. No arrest has been made so far.

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FOUR PEOPLE from two families in Gorakhpur’s Chauri Chaura town have been booked for sedition following a complaint that they hoisted the Pakistan flag on the rooftop of their houses, police said on Friday.

The two families have told the police that they had put up religious flags, which were mistaken for the Pakistan flag, said Gorakhpur Additional Superintendent of Police Manoj Kumar Awasthi. They removed the religious flags once social media posts claiming that they were Pakistan flags started doing the rounds.

No Pakistan flag was found during a search of the two houses, the police said. The families handed over to the police four flags, which they said had been mistaken for the Pakistan flag.

Comment by Riaz Haq on November 26, 2021 at 10:33am

13 years after 26/11, #India's #Bollywood star Amitabh Bachchan wants better ties with #Pakistan: "No single act of terror must be given the power to destroy the interconnectedness of our stories, our plural solidarities" #Pakistan #Hindutva #Islamophobia https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/13-years-26-11-at...

Mumbai had been attacked before, but not like this. This was a choreographed sequence of strikes, using hand-held weapons, by 10 terrorists who had come in by the sea. This time, Ground Zero was not a place, it was an arc. It was horror made for the age of the instantaneous spectacle, it foreshadowed the era where we define ourselves by our constant posts of image, text and video.


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Thirteen years later, the question is, how do we pay the real tribute to the 166 people who died in the 26/11 attacks, in Mumbai, the one they truly deserve? How do we move out of the shadows of that paralysing moment? Are we, who survived in Mumbai and in India, free to tell new stories?

The reality is that 26/11 has had a long afterlife, and it has got entangled with the tumultuous history that still weighs down the Subcontinent. It is not yet clear that we have skirted all the traps it set for us. The danger was, and it still is, of letting ourselves be defined and deformed by fear, of making suspicion a habit, a guiding force for our institutions, and part of our political common sense.

For the last many years, I have been privileged to join The Indian Express and its community of readers in marking this day and each year, we celebrate the spirit of survival and understanding. Each year, I discover that the power of survival is linked to the power of humanity, of our collective commitment that we shall not let the terrorists define who we become.

This time, too.

True, 26/11 brought home the urgent need to shore up our policing systems and shake off the institutional lethargy that had set in on internal security. True, that we have to be lucky every day while the terrorist had to be lucky just once.

And yet, the danger is of letting the language and mantra of security spread and grow, till “we” are locked in constant and mortal combat with “them”, till accusation becomes more believable than proof, and only the spectres are clear and present, while everything else is looked upon as uncertain and subject to verification.

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