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This article was first published 1 year ago  » Cricket » T20 World Cup: Will India Field This Team Vs Pakistan?

T20 World Cup: Will India Field This Team Vs Pakistan?

October 21, 2022 13:56 IST
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IMAGE: Captain Rohit Sharma and Head Coach Rahul Dravid face a few selection dilemmas for the T20 World Cup match against Pakistan on Sunday. Photograph: Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images

India will be keen to set the record when they square up against Pakistan, who handed them a 10-wicket thrashing in the 2021 T20 World Cup in the UAE last year.

That was India's first-ever defeat to Pakistan in any format of the World Cup. Importantly, that opening loss seemed to affect India quite badly as they crashed out in the Super 12 stage of the World Cup.

Having arrived in Australia nearly 15-20 days before the start of the World Cup, India look much better prepared and relaxed ahead of their big clash against Pakistan at the MCG on Sunday.

The heavy rain forecast during the weekend in Melbourne could prove be a big factor in picking the playing XI.

India could play an extra pace bowler in place of a spinner with the conditions likely to suit the fast bowlers because of the wet weather.

The batting order is more or less settled for India who will be hoping that Rohit Sharma bounces back to form against Pakistan, who have been bolstered by the return of their premier fast bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi.

Pakistan's fast bowler attack -- Afridi, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah and Mohammad Hasnain -- could prove difficult to handle in rain-affected conditions.

K L Rahul has been in good form recently and will look to making the most of the Powerplay, while Rohit could be expected to take his time to get some form back.

The in-form duo of Virat Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav form a strong middle order with the dangerous Hardik Pandya to follow at No 5.

Specialist finisher Dinesh Karthik is expected to retain his place ahead of Rishabh Pant.

It remains to be seen if India trust Hardik to bowl four overs in favourable conditions, which could pave the way to include an extra batter in either Pant or Deepak Hooda.

Ravichandran Ashwin could be the first pick among the spinners given his good showing in the practice games, including the 3/32 against Western Australia.

If India select a second spinner, it remains to be seen if India opt for Yuzvendra Chahal's wicket-taking ability or Axar Patel's all-round skills.

Among the pacers, Mohammed Shami's smashing comeback in the warm-up match against Australia has sealed his place in the playing XI. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Arshdeep Singh could be the other two pace bowlers ahead of Harshal Patel.

My XI: Rohit Sharma, K L Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Dinesh Karthik, Ravichandran Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal/Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Arshdeep Singh.

Who do you think should be part of India's playing for their T20 World Cup opening match against Pakistan on Sunday?

Please select your team from the list below and do post your playing XI in the message board below:

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