Kohli and Hardik took the game away from us, says Babar

“I am not surprised by the innings from Kohli. He has played long enough to tame such situations and that’s why he is such a big player.”

October 24, 2022 12:15 am | Updated October 26, 2022 08:32 am IST - Melbourne:

On tenterhooks: Azam seeks clarification from the umpires after a no-ball call in the final over.

On tenterhooks: Azam seeks clarification from the umpires after a no-ball call in the final over. | Photo Credit: AFP

Babar Azam had a forgettable outing at the park. Dismissed for a blob by Arshdeep Singh, the Pakistan skipper then watched Virat Kohli effect a remarkable turnaround in scripting a fruitful chase in a key ICC Twenty20 World Cup game here at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Trudging into the post-match press conference late on Sunday night, Babar lauded Kohli and also explained his plans which however failed. “We were close, may be a bit ahead of India after taking those four wickets. But the way Hardik (Pandya) and Kohli batted, they took the game away from us. We could not manage those last four to five overs. But there is no point blaming the bowlers as these things happen in cricket,” Babar said.

He also praised Kohli and Pandya: “I am not surprised by the innings from Kohli. He has played long enough to tame such situations and that’s why he is such a big player. We all know what Kohli can do and it is a lesson for us too to watch someone playing so well under pressure. Hardik too has been an important player for India as he had shown in the Asia Cup. Here too he played well.”

And as for his last throw of dice being spin, Babar revealed: “All credit to Kohli. In the middle, we decided we wanted a wicket and held the spinner back. We had a lot of positives, especially the way Iftikhar (Ahmed) and Shaan (Masood) played.”

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