Pakistan is officially out of the World Cup. Even though it should not have been a problem, but qualifying for the quarterfinals seemed like the biggest challenge and we managed to pull through. What is important in all of this is how we did that. With the absence of so many of our top players, Pakistan ended up playing their third string of bowlers who were responsible for seeing the team through. The star amongst them undoubtedly was Wahab Riaz. There cannot be enough praise for the way he has bowled throughout the tournament, especially yesterday. He showed the world what fast bowling is really about. Watson, an extremely experienced player, who is strong at playing the pull, was left completely baffled by the fast bouncers. Wahab kept asking him questions to which Watson had no reply. It was one of the most hostile and intimidating spells seen after a very long time. Had those two catches been taken, the match could have truly turned around. The worst part about losing yesterday’s match is not that we lost. It’s the fact that we will always wonder what if… This question will haunt us till we do not recover from being knocked out of the World Cup. However, keeping the World Cup on the side for a second... exciting times are to follow for Pakistani cricket. A new captain and young players in the team. All the injured players will also be back in the team which will make it difficult to pick the first string of bowlers. There will be problems to begin with, settling in with this change but it is necessary. The only direction we should go from here is up.

–Shaan Tahir

shantahir@gmail.com