2021 T20 World Cup: Babar Azam Expects Pakistan to Win Against India
Pakistan have never beaten India in a men's cricket World Cup in ODIs or T20Is.
One of the most keenly awaited contests at almost every men’s cricket world cups is the one between arch-rivals India and Pakistan.
At the 2021 T20 men’s World Cup, the game is slotted for 24 October in Dubai, where Pakistan have been unbeaten in their last six games.
“We’ve been playing cricket in UAE for the past three-four years and we know the conditions really well,” Azam was quoted as saying by the ICC.
“We know how the wicket will behave and the adjustments batters will have to make. On the day who plays the better cricket, wins the match. If you ask me, we will win,” added the star batsman, who is set to play his first T20 World Cup and will make his debut as captain.
Pakistan have been playing their home games in UAE after international teams showed reluctance to travel after the 2009 terror attack on Sri Lanka. While some franchise cricket has been played in recent years, New Zealand, at the eleventh hour, and then England were the latest to pull out of tour to Pakistan.
Pakistan have never beaten India in a World Cup match in either ODIs or T20Is but captain Azam believes they can change the trend.
“We know the pressure and the high intensity of each game, especially the first one. Hopefully, we can win the match and carry the momentum forward. Your belief and confidence as a group matter a lot before a tournament. As a team, our confidence and morale are really high. We are not thinking of the past but the future. We are preparing for that.
“I am fully confident that we are well prepared and will play good cricket on the day,” he added.
The skipper also noted that there was a good mix of experience and youth in the squad.
“All the players have entered the side after a good domestic performance. We have a lot to learn from the senior players in the side because they have so much experience, they have played the World Cup and leagues before.
“Seven-eight players in our squad have also played the Champions Trophy before which brings out different confidence.”
Pakistan have appointed former Australian opener Matthew Hayden and the South Africa pacer Vernon Philander as the batting and bowling consultants respectively for the tournament.
“Hayden and Philander bring a lot of experience. Our attempt will be to learn from them as much as we can and quickly. The boys have the ability to absorb quickly and mix with them.
“You can see Philander has already started working hard with the bowlers and you can see the past record, bowlers win you the tournament. Hasan Ali was our best bowler in the Champions Trophy. He will take the bowling line-up alongside him,” said Azam.
Pakistan will play their warm-up matches against West Indies on 18 October and South Africa on 20 October in Dubai and Abu Dhabi respectively.
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