Dubai: Ahead of the much-anticipated clash against Pakistan in the Super 12s stage of the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, India’s skipper Virat Kohli on Sunday said that everyone in the world watches the match between India and Pakistan and this can prove as motivation for the Men in Blue.
Pakistan won the toss against India and opted to field first. The four players who would not be in the playing XI for India are: Rahul Chahar, Ishan Kishan, Ashwin and Thakur.
“We are pretty happy with setting the target. We would have bowled first too, but the toss is not in your control. We are pretty balanced with our squad and you need to be prepared for it. We need to stay as professional as possible. We need to stay focussed on the processes. Everyone watches it closely all over the world,” Kohli told host broadcaster Star Sports during the toss.
“We can use that as a motivation, but we need to ensure we don’t get too emotional and need to just stay professional. The pitch looks very different. Evenly rolled and there is no grass at all which was the case during the IPL, and I’m sure that was done to hold it together well for the World Cup. We expect the pitch to stay good all through and set a good total,” he added.
Speaking at the toss, Pakistan captain Babar Azam said, “We are going to bowl first. We’ll look to take early wickets and put pressure. Dew is also a factor. We have had good practice sessions and am confident about our preparations. Pakistan’s bowlers are known to trouble other teams but I am confident about our batting too. Haider Ali is left out.”
India’s Playing XI: Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli(c), Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant(w), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Varun Chakravarthy.
Pakistan’s Playing XI: Babar Azam(c), Mohammad Rizwan(w), Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Haris Rauf, Shaheen Afridi.