T20 World Cup semifinal

T20 World Cup semifinal

Ahead of the much-anticipated T20 World Cup semifinal between India and England on Thursday, Indian captain Rohit Sharma did not hold back in addressing ball-tampering allegations made by Pakistani cricket legend Inzamam ul Haq. Inzamam had raised suspicions about Indian left-arm pacer Arshdeep Singh’s ability to achieve reverse swing during the Super Eights clash against Australia, which India won by 24 runs.

The controversy began when Inzamam questioned Arshdeep’s integrity after the Indian bowler managed to get reverse swing in the 15th over of the Australian innings. This remarkable feat played a crucial role in India’s victory, helping them defend a total of 205 runs and advance to the semifinals, while Australia was eliminated from the tournament following Afghanistan’s win over Bangladesh.

Inzamam’s comments were made during a television program in Pakistan, where he suggested that Arshdeep’s reverse swing was suspicious given the condition of the ball. He implied that if Pakistani bowlers had achieved the same, there would have been significant backlash.

“If Pakistan bowlers did this, there would have been a hue and cry. We know how to reverse it really well. If Arshdeep can reverse it in the 15th over, there’s been some serious work done on the ball,” Inzamam remarked. He went on to compare Arshdeep’s performance with that of India’s lead pacer Jasprit Bumrah, whose action is known to facilitate reverse swing, implying that Arshdeep’s success was due to tampering.

Responding to these allegations during a pre-match press conference in Guyana, Rohit Sharma defended his bowler and criticized Inzamam’s lack of understanding of the conditions. “If you are playing in such warm conditions and the wickets are this dry, the ball will reverse on its own,” Rohit explained. He emphasized that reverse swing is a common occurrence in the hot and dry conditions of the West Indies, affecting all teams, not just India.

“The ball is reversing for all teams. Not just for us. You know sometimes, it’s important to use your brain. You have to understand where we are playing. Matches are not taking place in England or Australia. We are playing on dry wickets in the West Indies in warm conditions. So it’s natural to get reverse swing. Not just India, every team is getting reverse swing,” Rohit asserted.

As India prepares to face England in the semifinal at 6:30 PM UAE time, the focus remains on their performance and strategy. The winner of this match will go on to play South Africa in the final on Saturday. South Africa secured their spot in the final by defeating Afghanistan by nine wickets in the first semifinal.

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By- Sahiba Suri

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