Preview: India, Pakistan set for T20 World Cup opener | Cricket News


Pakistan won the outing in Dubai last year, sealing their first win over India in World Cups.

Who: India vs Pakistan
Where: MCG, Melbourne, Australia
When: Sunday, October 23, 7pm (08:00 GMT)

It’s the main event before the final. India vs Pakistan at the T20 World Cup 2022 will take place in Melbourne on Sunday.

And it’s both sides’ tournament opener.

The South Asian neighbours will meet in the opening match of Group 2 of the Super 12 stage. A win for either side will bag them two points as they kick off their campaign in search of a second T20 title.

Rain expected

But dampening the mood, and the sides’ hunt for two points, is the expected rain.

There was a 90 percent chance of rain affecting the fixture – which later got reduced to 75 percent – with a high chance of showers during the match in the evening which starts at 7pm (08:00 GMT), according to the Australian Government’s Bureau of Meteorology.

Head to head

India hold a clear advantage over Pakistan in the shortest format of the game.

They have won nine of the 12 matches against their neighbours. Two of Pakistan’s three wins have come in the last year, one of which was at last month’s Asia Cup in Dubai.

T20 World Cup history

India won the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007, beating Pakistan by five runs in the final. Pakistan then took the title away from India two years later in London.

Neither team has won the title since then, although India came close in 2014, losing to Sri Lanka in the final.

Tickets, anyone?

Tickets for the game at the near 100,000-capacity Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) sold out within five minutes and organisers are expecting a packed stadium on Sunday evening.

Last T20 World Cup meeting

Pakistan registered their maiden World Cup win over India at the T20 event in Dubai last year: A 10-wicket drubbing.

India set Pakistan a target of 152, thanks to Virat Kohli’s 57 and Rishabh Pant’s 39 after Shaheen Shah Afridi had reduced them to 331 for three in six overs.

Pakistan’s chase was comfortably completed by captain Babar Azam and wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan.

‘Always special playing against Pakistan’

“It’s always special playing against Pakistan because there is a special hype around that match,” India’s wicketkeeper Pant said ahead of the clash. “There are so much emotions involved, not only for us, but the fans and everyone.

“It’s a different atmosphere and when we were singing our national anthem, I actually get goosebumps.”

Recent record

India come in to the tournament on the back of two T20 series wins at home over Australia and South Africa.

They also have the advantage of arriving in Australia much earlier than Pakistan and playing two practice matches against a local side.

Pakistan made it to the final of the Asia Cup last month, but lost by 23 runs. They then lost a closely contested T20 series at home against England but won a tri-nation series in New Zealand.

Injury updates

India will be without star fast-bowler Jasprit Bumrah, who has been ruled out of the tournament with a back injury, and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja who is recovering from knee surgery.

Pakistan, meanwhile, will be particularly buoyed by the return of their pace spearhead Shaheen Shah Afridi who has an excellent record against India’s batsmen of late. Top-order batter Fakhar Zaman is also expected to be back for Sunday’s clash.





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