Pakistan batter Shan Masood said he and Shadab Khan should have stayed there longer to try to get 155-160 to give their side a better chance in the T20 World Cup final on Sunday.
Pakistan bowling attack showed why it’s rated as the best in the business, as they made a below-par target of 138 look like a mountain in the T20 World Cup final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. England eventually clinched the trophy, but Pakistan produced a fine display of fast bowling.
Masood felt 15-20 more runs could have tilted the game in Pakistan’s favour and took the blame for not providing a solid finish.
“When Babar and I were batting, we built a very good platform and then lost two wickets. We recovered that with Shadab and myself and then I don’t think we finished well and I think me and Shadab hold ourselves accountable for not staying there,”he said.
Masood and Babar Azam had added 39 runs for the third wicket in just four overs. Masood took 16 runs off Liam Livingstone’s over immediately after the mid innings drinks break to put Pakistan in a strong position at 84 for 2 in 11 overs. But they lost their captain and Iftikhar Ahmed in consecutive overs, leaving them in need of another rebuild.
Masood and Shadab scored 36 off 24 balls and looked on course to get 160. But both of them were dismissed in back-to-back overs, trying to clear the boundaries. The Men in Green lost all the life out of the innings and managed only 16 runs in the last 22 balls.
“We could have finished the innings really well. Personally, I take blame for it. I thought that we’re aiming for 170 and having looked at how the innings ended, maybe we could have used with a batsman staying until the end and getting us to 155-160 which looked very good on a pitch that did something,”Masood added.
The pitch continued to offer plenty of movement in the second innings as Shaheen Afridi cleaned up Alex Hales in the first over. Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf bowled brilliantly, with numerous plays and misses from English batters.
Rauf claimed 2 for 23 in four overs, removing Phil Salt and dangerous-looking Jos Buttler inside the powerplay. Later an injury to Afridi pretty much closed the doors for their victory.