Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar took a dig while praising Muhammad Rizwan for his match-winning knock against Sri Lanka on October 10, Tuesday. Akhtar heaped praise on the wicketkeeper-batter and highlighted the point that he gets cramps too often. Rizwan played a brilliant inning of 131* runs off 121 balls to help achieve the mammoth total of 345 runs and get his side past the victory line.
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The wicketkeeper-batter was visibly in pain due to cramps, but he stood firm on the pitch to help get Pakistan their second win of the ICC ODI World Cup 2023. The legendary Pakistani heaped praise on Rizwan and said that getting cramps was fairly natural as he kept wickets for 50 overs. However, Akhtar didn’t hold himself back from taking a dig at him and comparing him with India wicketkeeper-batter KL Rahul.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, the 48-year-old said, “Mohammad Rizwan gets cramps very often. I can understand that you are not a very big unit, and it is very demanding on the body to keep wickets for 50 overs and then score a hundred. But KL Rahul also kept wickets in Chennai heat and almost scored a hundred.”
Applauding the youngster, he said, "Mohammad Rizwan took Pakistan home with a brilliant knock. The way he batted in the second half of his innings was very crucial. The way he scored after crossing 70 was very heartwarming to see. He played for his country and made sure they won.”
Notably, this was Babar Azam and Co’s consecutive win in the tournament, with them defeating Netherlands in their first match. The Men in Green will now lock horns with ODI World Cup 2023 hosts India on October 14, Saturday, at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad.