India vs Pakistan: A match for years is just about to unfold in a matter of a few hours as Virat Kohli’s team India will be up against Babar Azam’s Pakistan in Match number 16 of the ICC T20 World Cup 2021 in Dubai International Stadium.
The two sides only meet in the ICC organised events due to strained bilateral relations owing to the political tensions. India and Pakistan will lock horns for the first time since the ODI World Cup 2019.
The two giant cricket nations have met 12 times in the ICC mega-events before the upcoming fixture and the Men in Blues have absolutely hammered the Men in Green in all the meetings. Out of those 12 outings, 5 happened in the T20 World Cups.
The tickets for the high-pressure clash between India and Pakistan were sold out within a few hours as the Emirates Cricket Board and UAE government allowed the attendance of 70 per cent of fans in the Dubai International Stadium.
With no bilateral clashes since 2008, India and Pakistan have only met in ICC tournaments which furthermore increase the intensity of the match as the rivalry of the two nations doesn’t hold onto the field of cricket, it goes beyond the fence and affect the emotions of the fans.
Interestingly after the recent pullout of England and New Zealand from Pakistan’s home series, the Men in Green would certainly be in the thoughts of revenge as they open their T20 World Cup 2021 campaign. It is noteworthy that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has been offered a handsome sum by a couple of Pakistani business tycoons for defeating India, and other top sides in the T20 World Cup 2021.
Pakistan has a strong balanced squad for the World Cup. They have experienced campaigners in Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan, Shoaib Malik, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Hafeez and Shaheen Shah Afridi.
There is quality in the Pakistani squad which will encourage the side to outperform the opposition on any given day. Babar Azam has been sensational with his batting abilities. He has outshone several big guns in international cricket with his brilliant batting.
His opening partner Mohammad Rizwan is another match-winner who can lead the side to a win and has done on several previous occasions. Shaheen Shah Afridi, the left-arm seamer, will look to trouble the Indian batters in the powerplay. The pacer has got swing and good bouncers to deceive the opposition. With his height, he can effectively use his bouncers to his advantage.
The experience of all-rounder Shoaib Malik will definitely provide the side with valuable inputs on plenty of occasions. The all-rounder has played T20 cricket all across the globe and has mastered it.
Moreover, Pakistan has a 10 match winning streak in the UAE, which is their home away from home for the last decade or so. They know the surface pretty well having played several matches here in Dubai.
Whether Pakistan will be able to break the shackles and manage to overcome the Indian challenge is a different matter although and will remain to be seen when both sides meet, however, one thing that is guaranteed is a quality contest between the two arch-rivals.
India on the other side have several talking points. Right from the openers to the bowlers and the X factor, there is everything you need to excel and lift the ICC T20 World Cup 2021.
Two of the most successful batters of modern-day cricket wear Indian jerseys (Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma). The likes of KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Suryakumar Yadav can easily drift the game away from the opposition in a matter of few deliveries.
The India bowling unit spearheaded by Jasprit Bumrah has every aspect covered. Bhuvneshwar Kumar can swing the ball both ways, Mohammad Shami can trouble the batsman with his outgoing deliveries. Spin ace Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja can tighten the grip during the middle overs.
So, there are several match-winners in the entire Indian squad. The players have enough experience under their belt and can prove to be a potent weapon. The recent IPL 2021 will further help the Indian cricketers as they know very well the pitch turns out to be.
Who comes out as the winner is something unpredictable, especially, in the T20 matches and even the experts can’t foresee that, everyone can only make guesses and hope for their prediction to come true.
The on-paper record and stats of the Indian team are far better than their Pakistani counterparts. One can easily predict India as a clear winner of the match after looking at names and the squad and we cheer for India as well and hope the Men in Blue continues its winning streak against Pakistan.
The rest action will begin sharply at 7:30 PM IST as India and Pakistan ticks on the countdown to delivering a quality engagement.