Can India continue its Supremacy against Pakistan? India vs Pakistan
India vs Pakistan : 7-0 or 6-1? That’s the scoreline we could have at the end of Indo-Pak games. Cricket analysts, ex-cricketer strongly believe India should make it 7-0 while fans have divided opinions ruled more by heart than by head.
The form in the World Cup clearly shows advantage India. However, breaking down each players talent, both sides are equally matched on paper. Both teams have top heavy sides with good bowlers at its disposal. However, spin gives India a massive edge but taking out India’s Shikhar Dhawan from the contest, it would be an equaliser. Toss will be a crucial factor tomorrow, both sides would want to bat first and post a score above 330. However, rain will be a factor and players from both team would hope the rain stays away from India vs Pakistan match. Apart from that there is huge sponsor money involved (Rs 100 Cr) which could be at stake if not for the encounter in India vs Pakistan match
Playing eleven for tomorrow of both teams
KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Vijay Shankar, MS Dhoni, Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, JaspritBumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav/ Mohammad Shami
Fakhar Zaman, Imam Ul Haq, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Sarfaraz Khan, Asif Ali/Harris Sohail, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Shaheen Afridi/ Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali.
There will be some mini battles that would decide which way India vs Pakistan match is heading.
Fakhar Zaman , Babar Azam vs Indian Pacer
Zaman would have fond memories of CT 2017 centuries, last time two teams met in ICC Tournament. He is good at at guarding wicket and throws hands at whenever width is on offer. Anything slightly short or too full is punished, and like all subcontinental batsman, he is strong at putting away whenever their ball is down the leg side. However, he is susceptible to the bouncers as he gets into awkward position going for a pull or hook while driving down the ground. A bowler such as Bumrah, Shami are ideal candidates to make him hurry onto both shots. So this could be defining moment at the start for India to make inroads into the middle order. Even Bhuvi can be a good option if the pitch offers some swing.
In Babar, Pakistan has a complete player in ODI cricket after ages. He watches ball till the last moment and makes backward, forward moves and nets accordingly. His exquisites cover drive against Australia were treat to the eye of cricket lovers. However, just against Australia, when he looked good, Azam was pouched by bouncers. Bumrah is an ideal candidate to exploit that weakness given how skiddy he can be. Sometimes while steering it down to third man region, he often lands in trouble. With the pitch having something in it, Indian pacers should exploit that.
Mohammad Amir vs Rahul, Virat and Rohit
The leading wicket-taker of the ICC World Cup 2019 has been rewarded for his abilities to pitch the bowl fuller. However, rest of the Pakistani bowler pitched bowl too full or short at the beginning against Australia only for their leader of attack to show the way and grab 5-30 against Kangaroos. Rohit, Virat will have to be mindful of deliveries that they may not try and play across the line at the start. His majority of deliveries goes away from right-handers after pitching. So batsman will have watch movement till the very end. The wobbly seam position as well, which holds its line after pitching that could create doubt in batsman mind.
Pakistan against wrist spin
Fakhar Zaman, Sarfaraz Khan, have been victims to leg spinner more than five times with Adil Rashid, Akila Dhananjaya being a chief nemesis. While Shoaib Malik had issues against part-time leg spin of Sachin Tendulkar dating a decade back. Babar Azam is the one Men in green will look to counter leg spin whether the conditions will dictate one or two spinners play. Even in UAE, Pakistan looked all at sea against “Kul-Cha”. So wrist spin could play a small but significant factor in the middle overs in India vs Pakistan match.
Venue and weather
The weather is unlikely to be clear for tomorrow. With chances of rain we could’ve to see curtailed India vs Pakistan match. The average score at the Old Trafford ground is 260 in last five games. Of 45 games being played, 18 have resulted in a win for side batting first. However, considering conditions and the likelihood of rain, the team that wins toss will field first.
India is coming after victory over Australia, South Africa and a point shared with New Zealand due to washout. Purely in terms of points needed to qualify for semis, it is Pakistan who has 3 points in 4 matches. It stands languishing at no.8 in the points table will be under more pressure not to lose. With the added stress of India vs Pakistan contest, it’s the side that holds its nerves would end up winning. More often than in the last decade, it’s been Team Blues.
Pakistan have struggled to chase down targets. Significant evidence to that is the last match against Kangaroos where they crumbled though being on the front foot. Thus, they want to bat first. India has won five of their six World Cup clashes against Pakistan batting first. The only time they chased was in 2003. Even then contest was still after Tendulkar’s genius batting display ended with nearly a 100 runs to get. Virat cannot forget CT 17 finals. So, looking at history and present conditions, the captain will need to weigh everything to make the final call. Overthinking could be fatal here.
Pic Courtesy: Inkhabar