Pakistan has had an inconsistent run in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. After losing to West Indies, they defeated England and their game against Sri Lanka was a no-result due to rain. They lost by big margins to Australia and India before bouncing back with a win against South Africa in Lord’s. Following the defeat to India, the team came for massive criticism from fans, with Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur revealing that he wanted to ‘commit suicide’. Now, Pakistan’s bowling coach Azhar Mahmood has lashed out at the Pakistani media for spreading negativity and urged them to be positive.
Speaking after the end of the match against South Africa, Mahmood spoke about how the media did not appreciate Haris Sohail’s knock of 89 during the Lord’s clash and reiterated that there should be some positivity when a team does well. Responding to a question from a Pakistani journalist, “For God's sake, say something positive. This is why a person feels like committing suicide by consuming poison. If a person says something positive, there is at least something that we can look forward to. In our country, people feel that if the match is lost then lives have ended,” Mahmood said.
For Pakistan, their path to the semi-final is simple. They must win their remaining games. If they lose to New Zealand today, they will still not be eliminated. If they win two out of their three games, then they will have to hope England lose their remaining games and that Sri Lanka does not win more than one game. They will be hoping Bangladesh lose both their games. There is a possibility that if Pakistan wins all their games and that Australia, New Zealand lose one and India win all their games, there could be an India vs Pakistan semi-final.
Currently, only Australia has sealed their spot in the semi-final after they defeated England by 64 runs at Lord’s thanks to Aaron Finch’s century and a superb haul of 5/44 by Jason Behrendorff and Mitchell Starc’s 4/37. If New Zealand beat Pakistan in Edgbaston, then they secure a place in the last four.