Ahead of his side’s high-octane ICC T20 World Cup clash against Pakistan, Indian head coach Rahul Dravid showed a rare, agressive side of him, saying that he does not want players to bat like a ‘Wall’ but smash bowlers all over the park.
India will take on Pakistan in their Super 12 clash at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday. Ahead of the match, Dravid, known as ‘The Wall’ during his playing days for his patient, defensive batting style expects India to go all guns blazing at arch rivals.
“No absolutely not. No walls, we just want players to smash it,” said Dravid in a video posted by ICC on being questioned if he wants players to bat like him.
Dravid said that this match between two Asian giants adds a little spice to the game.
He also feels that a team cannot go into the match with their history or past in their mind.
“In T20I cricket, margins are so small. You cannot go into every game thinking about the past. You can take confidence from it. But you got to realise that irrespective of who you are playing, they can beat you on that day and you gotta be at the top of your game,” said the head coach.
Dravid said that team feels ready for the match and tournament and its all about execution of plans in the tournament.
The India legend, who made a name for himself in Tests and ODIs, said that he enjoys coaching players in shortest format.
“Just the way data and technology is being used now in the game, you have to stay abreast of it and ensure a way in which you can pass on the message to your players. I really enjoy coaching in this format. It is quick, fast. It challenges you, tests you, frustrates you,” said Dravid.
The much-awaited clash between India and Pakistan will take place at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) with over a lakh fans’ presence and if the recent encounters are any indicators, the match may end up going to the wire.
The game could also be touted as the battle between India’s batting-heavy side pitted against the fierce and formidable bowling attack of Pakistan, since the Pakistani bowlers made the difference when the two teams took on each other in the last edition of the T20 World Cup in 2021.
There will be quite a few matchups thought out the game with India’s openers looking to dominate the pace troika of Shaheen Afridi, Harris Rauf and Naseem Shah.
It was not a long time ago that the Pakistani pace attack made early inroads into the Indian batting lineup in the T20 World Cup last year.
While India will look to counter the Pakistani pace battery, it will be a challenge for the Men in Green to stop Suryakumar Yadav as he has been in great form since the time he donned the Indian jersey.
The number one T20I side, India will be looking forward to avenging their loss to Pakistan at the previous edition of the T20 World Cup back in 2021 and the most recent loss in Asia Cup 2022, which proved to be a key reason why India failed to qualify for the final of the tournament in which it had headed as defending champions.
India and Pakistan met at Asia Cup twice, with India winning the group-stage encounter and Pakistan winning the Super 4 clash. Both matches were thrillers and satiated fans’ appetite for some all-time fierce cricket between these two giants.
Squad: Rohit Sharma (c), KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Deepak Hooda, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Hardik Pandya, R Ashwin, Yuzvendra Chahal, Axar Patel, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Harshal Patel, Arshdeep Singh, Mohammad Shami.
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