Former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram has lashed out at the authorities for preparing a unsporting track for the ICC World Twenty20 semi-final between Pakistan and Sri Lanka at the Premadasa stadium in Colombo.
Wasim, who is in Colombo as a commentator and expert, described the pitch on which Sri Lanka defeated Pakistan by 16 runs on Thursday in a low scoring game as "impossible pitch to bat on".
"I should say that this pitch certainly was not in the spirit of the game. It was an impossible pitch to bat on and I am surprised they had such a surface for such a big match," Akram told Geo News channel.
The former left-arm pacer said the dry and turning pitch was a test for the batsmen and he always knew that even chasing 140 on it would be a challenging job for any side. "On this pitch 140 was like chasing 180. I don't know how you can have such a pitch for such a big match, it was disappointing," he said.
The former skipper also pointed out that the pitch was not meant for T20 cricket.
Wasim said that before the men's semifinal the women's semifinal was already been played on the pitch, which was already assisting the bowlers.
"When Pakistan batted 60 overs had been bowled on it. This is not acceptable for such a big match," Wasim, who has taken 414 Test and 502 one-day wickets, said.
The former pacer added that the "poor surface robbed the spectators of entertainment".
Wasim also criticised the umpiring in the match pointing out that a rank bad decision had cost Pakistan the wicket of their in-form player, Nasir Jamshed.
"The moment umpire gave Nasir out leg before I knew the ball had pitched outside the leg side. Such errors are unpardonable in such a big match," he said.
Other Pakistani former players also criticised the pitch, slamming the International Cricket Council for failing to properly ensure a sporting pitch for the big match.
Former Test leg-spinner, Abdul Qadir said that since T20 cricket was played for total entertainment it the duty of the ICC to ensure preparation of sporting pitches.
"People want to see runs scored and big hits in T20. Such low scoring games is okay for Test match but not in T20 cricket," Qadir said.
Former Test batsman and national coach, Mohsin Khan said he was surprised at the quality of the pitch prepared for the knock-out match.
"It meant basically the toss played too much of a vital role," said Mohsin.