Almost everyone, knowing the rivalry between India and Pakistan, terms a sporting contest between these two South Asian nations as a “pressure” contest, but India captain Rohit Sharma wants the word “challenge” rather than “pressure” to be used to describe the skirmish.
“Look, I don’t want to use the word “pressure” because pressure is constant. It’s not going to change ever. I would like to take this as a challenge. I want to use that word “challenge” a little more,” said Rohit in his press conference ahead of his team’s opening Super 12 clash here tomorrow in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
The huge Melbourne Cricket Ground will host the razor-sharp contest in front of a capacity crowd of fans from both these countries.
Rohit, one of two surviving members of the Indian squad under Mahendra Singh Dhoni that lifted the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007 in South Africa, does not want to look behind on what happened in the Asia Cup recently or in last year’s T20 World Cup against the same rivals.
In two of those matches, including in the last World Cup, Pakistan won.
“All the Pakistani teams that I’ve played against, from 2007 until 2022, have been good teams. I believe ‘on that particular day’ kind of a thing. On that particular day, if you’re good enough, you’ll beat any opposition. That is what has happened in the last so many years.
“Pakistan have been good in the last World Cup. They beat us. They were good in the Asia Cup. We were good, too, but we won the first game and they won the (more important) second one and we were out of the Asia Cup.”
Rohit concurred that the team had played enough matches, 35 in all, post the early exit in the last World T20 Cup to sort out the problems.
“Yeah, look, we obviously had a good run. We wanted to change a lot of things and we addressed what went wrong for us in the last World Cup. We wanted to address all the situations, all the problems, all the issues. But we managed to get some of them right.
“I think coming into this World Cup, we are very well prepared. Like I said, we wanted to address a lot of issues and I think we managed to do that.”