It's getting tougher and tougher, admits Sarfaraz
June 17 (CRICKETNMORE) After facing a crushing 89-run defeat against arch-rivals India that was also their third loss in five games, Pakistan's proposition of making it to the semifinals of the ongoing World Cup has become tougher, skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed admits.
Pakistan lost to India in their crucial World Cup tie at the Old Trafford on Sunday after the DLS method came into play in the rain-marred match.
They now have just three points from five games and are languishing at the bottom of the table, just a spot above Afghanistan.
And in order to make it to the semi-finals, the 1992 champions need to win all their remaining four fixtures and hope for favourable results in other matches as well.
However, Sarfaraz is still hopeful that Pakistan can make a comeback and win all their remaining games against South Africa (June 23), New Zealand (June 26), Afghanistan (June 29) and Bangladesh (July 5).
"It is definitely getting tougher and tougher but we have four matches and hopefully we'll win all four of them," said Sarfaraz at the post-match presentation ceremony on Sunday here in Manchester.
Putting India to bat, Pakistan were not able to make use of the overcast conditions and allowed the Indian openers to score freely. Their bowlers were not up to the mark, barring Mohammed Amir, and allowed India to score a mammoth 336/5 which Pakistan failed to chase down.
Rohit Sharma was the star performer for India as he scored 140 runs of 113 balls, followed by skipper Virat Kohli (77 off 65) and K.L. Rahul (57 off 78).
"We won a good toss but unfortunately we didn't bowl in the right areas, Credit goes to Rohit, he played really well. Our plan was to pitch it up but we didn't hit the right areas. We won a good toss but we just didn't capitalize and conceded too many runs," said the Pakistan skipper.
During their chase of 337, Pakistan lost their opener Imam-ul-Haq quickly. However, Fakhar Zaman (62) and Babar Azam (48) stitched together a 104-run partnership and kept them in the hunt. However, Kuldeep Yadav scalped both their wickets and dented Pakistan's chase.
And then, Pakistan lost the wickets of Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik in quick succession and were down and out of the game.
"We were going really well with the bat as well, but we lost two-three quick wickets in the middle which is when we lost the match," Sarfaraz said.