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"I'm truly sorry": Kamran Akmal's public apology to Harbhajan, Sikh community for remarks on pacer Arshdeep's religion

Islamabad: Former Pakistan cricketer Kamran Akmal issued an apology on Monday for his remarks about the Indian pacer Arshdeep Singh, which sparked widespread outrage.
Akmal made controversial comments about Arshdeep Singh during a show on ARY News that covered the India-Pakistan ICC T20 World Cup match. During the show, he made a controversial comment about Arshdeep's religion, saying, "Kuch bhi ho sakta hai... 12 baj gaye hai (Anything can happen. It is already 12)."
His remarks were widely criticized, prompting Akmal to express his deep regret and emphasize his respect for Sikhs worldwide.
His remarks infuriated former Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh, who lambasted Akmal on X, saying, "Lakh di laanat tere Kamraan Akhmal.. You should know the history of Sikhs before you open your filthy mouth. We Sikhs saved your mothers and sisters when they were abducted by invaders, the time invariably was 12 o'clock . Shame on you...Have some Gratitude."
Now, Akmal has taken to X, issuing an apology saying, "I deeply regret my recent comments and sincerely apologize to @harbhajan_singh and the Sikh community. My words were inappropriate and disrespectful. I have the utmost respect for Sikhs all over the world and never intended to hurt anyone. I am truly sorry. #Respect #Apology."
In the match, Pakistan won the toss and put India in to bat. However, the Indian batters struggled on a tough surface as star openers Virat Kohli (4) and Rohit Sharma (13) failed to score big. Rishabh Pant (42 in 31 balls, with six fours) seemed to be playing on a different pitch.
He had useful partnerships with Axar Patel (20 in 18 balls, with two fours and a six) and Suryakumar Yadav (7 in 8 balls, with a four). However, the lower middle order crumbled under the pressure of scoring runs on such a tough pitch, and India managed just 119 in 19 overs.
Haris Rauf (3/21) and Naseem Shah (3/21) were the top bowlers for Pakistan. Mohammad Amir took two wickets while Shaheen Shah Afridi took one.
In the run chase, Pakistan took a more measured approach, with Mohammad Rizwan (31 in 44 balls, with a four and six) holding one end steady. However, Bumrah (3/14) and Hardik Pandya (2/24) took crucial wickets, including those of skipper Babar Azam (13), Fakhar Zaman (13), Shadab Khan (4), and Iftikhar Ahmed (5), maintaining pressure on Pakistan. With 18 runs needed in the final over, Naseem Shah (10*) tried to win it for Pakistan, but Arshdeep Singh (1/31) ensured Pakistan fell short by six runs.
Bumrah secured the 'Player of the Match' award for his match-winning spell.

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