Pakistan creates history by entering the ICC T20 World Cup final after 13 years. Pakistan beat New Zealand today at SCG and secured their spot in the finals. They await their opponent from the second semifinal between India and England.
A team that was written off from the World Cup a few days ago is now in the final. What a turnaround it has been for the Pakistan cricket team. In the words of Harsha Bhogle, "If you had asked Pakistan to script this return, I don’t think they could have written this themselves!"
Pakistan Had a 20% Chance to Qualify for the Semifinals
They had to rely on the Netherlands to beat South Africa and make a way for Pakistan. Pakistan started off the tournament with a huge upset against India. The loss to India was still sore when Zimbabwe beat them in the very next match.
It looked all over for the Pakistani team. Their star players were not performing to their capabilities, and luck seemed to have stayed back at home. The team has relied on their opening pair for some time now, but Babar and Rizwan looked out of touch at the start of the tournament.
Shaheen Afridi was supposed to be their danger man against India but he failed miserably. When Pakistan did win their first match, it was a result of an all-round performance. Pressure has two effects; you either succumb to it, or you overcome it.
Pakistan Took on the Pressure and Fought Their Hearts Out
For a moment, it felt that the fight took too long to break out. The final matches of the group stage kept some hope for Pakistan. They were playing Bangladesh whereas the other fixture was between the Netherlands and South Africa.
In most scenarios, the match between South Africa and the Netherlands seemed like a cakewalk for South Africa. Netherlands, though pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the ICC T20 World Cup 2022. Pakistan managed to beat Bangladesh on the same day and somehow made it to the semifinals.
Pakistan and New Zealand Semifinals in ICC World Cups Have Gone in Pakistan’s Favour in the Past
When these two giants met in the semifinals, many people thought of the ICC World Cup 1992 when Pakistan beat New Zealand in the semifinal. Pakistan had a fire in their eyes once again today. They knew that if they pushed hard once again they could do it against the black caps. In the match against New Zealand, Pakistan seemed unbeatable. Every Pakistani player played like he wanted to make it to the finals.
It has been a journey to remember for Pakistan. They still have one more step to lift the glorious ICC T20 World Cup trophy. Who stands in their way will be decided in tomorrow’s match between India and England. For the fans, an India vs Pakistan final will be the most desired fixture.