Just another dead rubber? Think again | PunterPolls Prediction
This was supposed to be the marquee clash of the league stage. Tickets for the game were sold out within 30 minutes of being made available online. It isn't a coincidence that the match is scheduled for Saturday primetime viewing in India and Pakistan and could have decided the group. Instead, to the organisers' dismay, we are left with a dead rubber as India have already qualified for the semi-finals and Pakistan are eliminated.
Unlike most dead rubbers though, there's still plenty of interest since it is still an India v Pakistan match. The number of contests between the two sides has decreased over the past few years due to the strained political relations between the two countries, and fans are still eager for any chance to see the great rivals face off.
One of India's proudest one-day records is that they have never lost to Pakistan in a World Cup game, having triumphed in all five encounters. Pakistan have a similarly spotless record against India in the Champions Trophy, though there have only been two clashes between the two sides.
While Pakistan will be looking to extend that run in Birmingham, India will be looking for payback after a stinging defeat in the one-day series at home earlier this year.
In that series, Pakistan showed off the potency of their bowling attack, and India's batsmen were left nonplussed. It will again be a confrontation between Pakistan's bowling might and India's batting strength. This time, MS Dhoni's side have some of the most in-form batsmen around. In contrast, Pakistan's batting has been seriously underwhelming, while India's bowlers, about whom there was much apprehension coming into the tournament, have not done too shabbily thus far.
Believe me, till day in any tournament a game between India and Pakistan had been so tensed that I won't been able to accept that today game is going to be just like another match for team India. Everyone knows that India team is the most balanced side of the tournament with the current form they are in, and with no surprise favorite to win the tournament as well.
Pakistan is under pressure, they are already out of the tournament and they have a bad record against India in any tournament they have played so far.
Our experts says, Indian should win this game. But Pakistan with nothing to loose situation is going to give them hard time. Overall, should be an interesting contest.
ICC Champions Trophy 2013 - 10th Match, Group B: India v Pakistan, 15 June
- Pakistan (22% Votes)
- India (78% Votes)