ICC World T20 2014: Was Pakistan’s performance against West Indies an April Fools’ prank?
Bookies were disappointed that Kamran Akmal didn’t drop a catch against the West Indies in ICC World T20 2014 © Getty Images
By Abhijit Banare
Please note this is a humour article — work of pure fiction
If rumours are to be believed, Pakistan chose the perfect occasion to plan an April Fools’ prank on their fans by losing to West Indies by a massive margin of 84 runs. While the batting was at its erratic best, some of the passages in the match were specially planned by the Pakistan team to surprise their fans, who have been tirelessly following the team’s inconsistencies since an indefinite period.
“With Pakistan not scheduled to play in the next six months, the fans won’t have anything to crib about. Hence the team had planned to dish out a memorable performance, so that it can haunt the fans in years to come,” said Kamran Chuckmal, a support staff of the team.
The team official also divulged on condition of anonymity that it was not just about the batting performance, but many other performances were also a way to trick the viewers during the match including the fielding and bowling.
“Pakistan fielders had worked extremely hard for this April fool performance. They underwent rigorous practice sessions. It was so much of hard work that Shahid Afridi and Umar Gul ended up presenting a synchronised diving effort. Kamran Akmal didn’t miss a catch. Even Saeed Ajmal bowled casually. How on earth would you expect him to go for over 40 runs in his quota in a T20I game [Twenty20]” revealed the source.
“We were even planning to call back Imran Farhat in to the side, but the fans would have realised that something is fishy if a batsman of Farhat’s reputation was included in the team!”
But this performance from Pakistan has caused heartburn not just in the hearts of fans, but among the bookies as well. Two bookies who had placed their bets on at least two run-outs said, “This was a disgusting performance. A lot of bets were placed on moments like Kamran Akmal dropping a catch, Afridi playing a brain-freeze shot, Gul being hammered for runs in a crunch match. Only Gul kept up to the promise.”
After hearing all this, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) trolled the Pakistan team by announcing that Jonty Rhodes has been appointed as ‘running between the wickets’ coach of the national team. While most of Kamran Akmal’s batting partners celebrated, Inzamam-ul-Haq spoiled the fun by informing Kamran that it was a prank and the board had threatened to take even during his playing days!
(Abhijit Banare is a reporter at CricketCountry. He is an avid quizzer and loves to analyse and dig out interesting facts which allows him to learn something new every day. Apart from cricket he also likes to keep a sharp eye on Indian politics, and can be followed on Twitter and blog)