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Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has reacted to the controversial dismissal of Saud Shakeel that took place on Day 4 of the second Test match against England in Multan.
Shakeel, who was well set on 94, seemed to be on the verge of taking the hosts to a famous win before the tragedy struck. However, Babar displayed great sportsmanship spirit saying that even though the catch did not seem clean, one must respect the decision of the umpire.
“The Shakeel dismissal cost us. It looked to us as if the ball had touched the ground. As a professional, you have to respect the umpire’s decision, but we felt the ball had been grounded,” Babar told media after the conclusion of the Test.
Shakeel looked in splendid touch and all hopes pinned on him to take Pakistan over the line and keep their WTC Final hopes alive. However, it all ended when English pacer Mark Wood’s short-ball tactics deceived him and the batter attempted a fierce pull shot off an angled delivery.
Shakeel failed to time the ball as it made contact with his gloves after which he was declared caught behin. Even though the stumper Ollie Pope dived to his right to take the catch, the dismissal looked a bit suspicious as a result of which the decision had to be reviewed instantly. The soft signal was out.
Replays showed that while Pope did put in a full dive to complete the catch, the ball was very close to the ground when he finished the catch. This forced the third umpire Joel Wilson to view the replays multiple times but he eventually decided against the batter as the English team erupted in joy and a gutted Shakeel took a long walk back after falling just six runs short of a well-deserved century.
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