'You Don't Know Whether to go Forward or Back': Gautam Gambhir Slams Virat Kohli For 'Nothing Shot' vs Shaheen Afridi
In India's Asia Cup 2023 opening against Pakistan on Saturday, Virat Kohli opened his account with a bang by hitting Naseem Shah's ball with a beautiful cover drive. That was a good start, and the way Pakistan's fast bowlers got back to work after the rain break in Pallekle would have helped calm some worries in the Indian camp.
Shaheen Afridi felt like he was on fire. The left-arm pacer did a great job of getting Rohit Sharma out, and then he also got Kohli out by bowling him for four to give the team an early boost.
While Rohit's dismissal was well done—Afridi took two balls away from the India captain, and the third one got through the defences and hit the stumps—the other two were not. Rohit scored 11.
But Kohli's early departure was mostly his fault. He tried to hit a ball from outside off to the third man area for a single or two, but an inside edge sent the ball into the stumps.
Waqar Younis and Matthew Hayden were kind to Kohli and said that he was "unlucky," but Gambhir said that his old teammate was "a bit casual."
"That shot didn't go anywhere, neither forward nor back. I think was a little too relaxed. When you play someone like Shaheen Afridi, that's what you get. "You don't know whether to go forward or backward," Gambhir said on Star Sports.
Waqar, a Pakistani great, gave Afridi credit for changing his length after the rain break, but he also said that the ball might have stayed a little lower than Kohli would have expected.
"Kohli had a little bad luck. Inside edge, the ball didn't get to the batter and may have even stayed a little bit low. But Shaheen Shah Afridi deserves credit for shortening his hair," he said.
Hayden added, "Yeah, inside edge onto the stumps, could have gotten anywhere."
India was in trouble at 66/4, but Hardik Pandya and Ishan Kishan saved the day by putting up a hundred runs together to help their team get a good score.
India was bowled out for 266. Pandya got the most runs with 87, and Ishan scored the most runs with 82.