Arshdeep would have taken Asif Ali’s catch on any given day, but pressure perhaps got to him: Manjrekar

In the 18th over of the match on Sunday (Sept 4), needing 34 runs, Asif Ali tried to sweep Ravi Bishnoi and it seemed like he would be returning to the pavilion.

Mumbai: Former India player Sanjay Manjrekar feels pace bowler Arshdeep Singh perhaps dropped Asif Ali’s catch in the Asia Cup Super Four game against arch-rival Pakistan on September 4 due to pressure, adding that under normal circumstances that same catch would have been taken by anybody.

In the 18th over of the match on Sunday (Sept 4), needing 34 runs, Asif Ali tried to sweep Ravi Bishnoi and it seemed like he would be returning to the pavilion. However, Arshdeep dropped the straightforward chance and Ali survived to bring back the game in Pakistan’s favour. Arshdeep then received a lot of criticism from netizens.

“I’m going to become like a psychologist. I’ll go very deep into the psyche of people. What is pressure? Pressure is when you have to perform an act and when performing the act, a thought comes into your head that this is a very important act. That’s when pressure gets to you. So, in normal course, Chinmay for example would have taken that catch. Anybody would have taken that catch who’s played a bit of cricket,” Manjrekar told Sports18’s sports news show ‘Sports Over The Top’.

“Arshdeep would have taken that catch normally, almost with one eye closed, 99 times out of 100. Maybe a thought that this is India vs Pakistan. This is a crucial catch and Asif Ali got him to drop that. It’s one of those things that happens. And that’s why I didn’t ask Rohit Sharma whether that catch was the turning point. Because it shouldn’t be just one dropped catch at a certain stage of the game. Pinning the blame on Arshdeep Singh, a young cricketer would not have been fair. You don’t lose cricket matches because of one moment. There are many contributing factors with which you lose a game, because all of those factors come by,” Manjrekar opined.

Manjrekar also said there were no issues with India’s batting as someone like Deepak Hooda can come and bat at No. 7.

“I don’t think the tail is too long because when you look at the batting ability of the team that played in the last game on paper, for example, if you line them down, you had somebody like a Deepak Hooda at (No.) 7. So that’s plenty of batting. So, I don’t think that was an issue. It was one of those things when you have this high-risk approach on the odd occasion, what will happen is that wickets will fall at the worst possible time.

“Suryakumar Yadav just got himself out, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul. So, it’s one of those things. But India still ended up getting 180. I thought they could have gotten 210-220 if there was more contribution from the lower half. Interestingly, in the first 10 overs, India got 93 and in the next 10, they got 88. But it’s one of the occupational hazards of this approach. But not because the tail is too long,” added Manjrekar.

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