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Pakistan Ready to Turn Tables on India (ICC T20 World Cup 2014)

Posted by on Thursday, March 20, 2014, 10:36
This news item was posted in Sports category and has 1 Comment so far .

Despite the disappointing defeat at the hands of South Africa in the second and final warm-up match, Pakistan remain upbeat over their tournament opener.

Pakistan

Pakistan

The mother of all games, a crunch battle and a highly-anticipated match are some of the expressions that define a world championship fixture between archrivals India and Pakistan.

A victory against India in a world event though has eluded Pakistan who have lost all their previous eight encounters against their old foes – five 50-over World Cup matches and three World Twenty20 fixtures – since 1992.

Both rivals will meet again on March 21 in Mirpur, in the opening group two encounter of the 2014 ICC World T20.

Before leaving for Bangladesh the men in green had appeared calm and were not overly perturbed about the high intensity clash.

For captain Mohammad Hafeez, playing India in a tournament opener was a positive sign, he thinks that his team’s morale can sky rocket with a win against the 2007 champions.

While speaking to The Express Tribune, some key Pakistan players also echoed the sentiments of their captain.

“The India game is one of the three tough group games we have to play,” said charismatic all-rounder Shahid Afridi whose back-to-back sixes spurred Pakistan to win over India in a thrilling Asia Cup battle earlier in the month.

Interestingly, the venue for the match is the same where Afridi’s heroics turned the tables for the men in green.

“Our group is difficult as after India we’ll play against Australia and the defending champions West Indies,” the big-hitter stated.

“There is no doubt that there is a lot of expectation against India. But we will maintain our calm and just take the match as an opening match which every team wants to win to start a tournament on a high.”

Another experienced all-rounder Shoaib Malik, who holds an impressive record against India, was also unfazed.

“India alone is not my target,” said Malik whose century helped Pakistan score a rare win in an ICC event over India in the 2009 Champions Trophy.

“My aim is to perform in all the matches, the India match is important because it’s our first fixture.”

Saeed Ajmal, who faces the challenge of countering top rated Indian batsmen on batting friendly conditions, was also in a positive mood.

“I take India as any other opposition. My aim has always been to take maximum wickets to help my team. I will enter the match with the same strategy.”

Stylish middle-order batsman Umar Akmal claimed he has no fear of the Indian team.

“Pakistan-India matches draw a lot of hype but I am not afraid of this big game. I’ll remain fearless.”

Mohsin rates Pakistan favourite against India

Former coach Mohsin Khan has rated Pakistan, the 2009 champions, favourites against India

“I don’t believe in the term jinx, whatever happened in the past is gone,” said former Test opener.

“On paper, Pakistan are better as they have a balanced side possessing quality batting and bowling. Our only concern is fielding and if we receive support from there we have bright chances to win.”

The former chief selector added that batting and bowling departments would have to perform better than usual if the fielding caves in under pressure.

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