He also questioned India’s body language during match against New Zealand
Former Pakistan pacer Aaqib Javed believes that Indian team has been severely affected by the Men in Green’s pacer Shaheen Afridi’s spell in their opening match of the ongoing T20 World Cup.
Left-arm fast-bowler Shaheen set up Pakistan’s victory with figures of 3/31 in the crucial match. In his opening burst, Shaheen fired in a searing yorker-length delivery to dismiss Rohit Sharma lbw for a golden duck and rifled one through KL Rahul's gate to rearrange the stumps. The lanky pacer also claimed the wicket of Virat Kohli towards the backend of the innings.
Speaking after India’s second consecutive defeat in the tournament, which came at the hands of New Zealand on Sunday, Javed said Shaheen’s spell made India change their opening pair.
“Rohit Sharma is one of the best players in T20 cricket but after one blow of Shaheen Shah Afridi, you changed your openers. You brought in Ishan Kishan as he is a leftie because they were afraid of putting two righties against [Trent] Boult, so Rohit was made to bat at number three. It was only two overs [opening spell] and being the one of the best in the world, Rohit should have gone out as an opener rather than hiding,” said Javed while speaking on PTV Sports.
“It’s all about confidence. If your number one player is not confident and ready to take the charge, its sends the same message to the entire team,” he added.
He also questioned India’s body language by stating that “they were just really scared to play any shot”.
India slumped to fifth place in Group II after their second successive defeat in the Super 12 stage and even winning the remaining three matches would not guarantee a place in the last four.