Basit Ali had alleged that India will play in a way which will knock Pakistan out of the World Cup. (Image credit: Getty Images)
Basit Ali, the former Pakistan cricket team batsman, had raked up a massive controversy when he made comments on India wanting to knock Pakistan out of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 deliberately. Following his comments, the Pakistan Cricket Board has apparently initiated action against the former player for his comments. In a report on Mumbai Mirror, the PCB chairman Ehsan Mani said the board had voiced their displeasure over the comments. "We have communicated to him our displeasure about his unsubstantiated comments during the World Cup. He is not an employee of the PCB but we have made our point clear," Mani said. In response, Ali responded, "I have not received any letter from the PCB. Everyone has seen how India played against England. Sourav Ganguly, Nasser Hussain and Waqar Younis have also made remarks on the way India played. When Basit Ali makes such remarks, no one seems to notice," Ali said.
Before the final week of league games begin, speaking to ARY News, Ali had alleged that India will lose deliberately to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh in order to knock Pakistan out of the tournament. “India would never want Pakistan to qualify for the semi-final. India’s remaining matches are against Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, and everyone saw the way they played against Afghanistan. People don't say that they will lose intentionally but India will play in such a way that people won't be able to make any remarks. When playing Australia, David Warner didn't play at all. Cricket is not a game of chance. In 1992, New Zealand purposely lost to Pakistan (in the league stage) and Imran Khan would agree with that. The Kiwis lost so they could play the semi-final in their own country,” Ali said.
India had won six consecutive games while England had stumbled in the middle of the league stages. However, in the crunch game between England and India at Edgbaston, England made 338 but India lost by 31 runs. Virat Kohli's side bounced back with wins over Bangladesh and Sri Lanka as they topped the group. India's win, though, had put Pakistan and Sri Lanka on the brink of elimination. Pakistan had won only one out of their six games but they ended the tournament in style with wins over New Zealand, Afghanistan and Bangladesh but they were knocked out as New Zealand ended with a superior net run-rate.