Ajinkya Rahane, an India cricketer, has suggested that Virat Kohli’s side should not take Babar Azam’s squad lightly ahead of their ICC T20 World Cup match on October 24 at the Dubai International Stadium, adding that “previous records don’t count” in the shortest format.
India has won all of its World Cup matches against Pakistan, including the One-Day Internationals (7-0) and T20 Internationals (2-0), (5-0). Despite the fact that Pakistan is short on match practise following the cancellation of their white-ball series with New Zealand and England, they have more than made up for it by participating in the National T20 Cup.
Moreover, over the past many years, Pakistan has played the majority of its international cricket in the United Arab Emirates, which has become their home ground after teams ceased travelling the country in the aftermath of the 2009 terror assault on the Sri Lankan squad. Knowing the conditions well makes the Babar Azam-led side one of the favourites.
“Whenever we play against any team, the past records don’t matter. We always focus on the present, our strategies, strengths, how the conditions are going to be etc. Media creates a bit of hype whereas the dressing room remains quiet. Focus is always on how well we can do as a team on that particular day,” Rahane said on Salaam Cricket in Dubai on Friday.
“I’m sure India against Pakistan match will be a good one. I’m obviously backing India to win the match but personally, I believe no team should be taken lightly. And I’m sure the Indian T20 team has as much respect for Pakistan as it has for any other team,” Rahane added.
The circumstances in the UAE were almost identical to those in India, according to Rahane, and the 2007 World T20 champions will acclimate fast after playing in the IPL there.
“Pakistan players have played quite a bit of cricket here in the UAE so they have an idea. But we also know how to adapt to these conditions as they aren’t much different from India. Those who have played the IPL 2021 have an advantage here in the T20 World Cup,” he added.
(With IANS inputs)