THE TIMES OF INDIA | Oct 14, 2023, 14:27:44 IST
ODI MATCH LIVE UPDATES
IND vs PAK World Cup 2023 Live Updates: A curious musical show prior to the toss, featuring several popular singers from the Hindi film industry, is indicative of the fact that the Indian board and ICC are keen to put on a spectacle.
After all, the tournament has, till now, failed to generate excitement for non-India games.The main show will be the performance of players from both teams. Man to man, India appear to have greater pedigree. They also have an enviable record in 50-over World Cups, having won all seven contests (1992, 1996, 1999, 2003, 2011, 2015, 2019).
Of the last eight matches, India have won six, with one game being rained out. Pakistan’s last win in ODIs vs India came in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy final.The hosts have been more eager to embrace Powerplay urgency than Pakistan, who still rely on the traditional approach of build first, attack later.
On flatter pitches, it leaves too much to do for the middle and lower order. India’s batting lineup, despite the ambiguity over Shubman Gill’s availability and apprehensions over a longish tail, has been in top form with all main batters getting tons in the last two months.The bowling unit leaked runs against Afghanistan in New Delhi. But that surface at Arun Jaitley Stadium was a road. India’s pursuit of 273 in 35 overs was proof.
Against Pakistan, India need to decide if they are better off playing on a slow, black-soil pitch, like in the Test here against Australia in March, with the spin-trio of R Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, and Ravindra Jadeja. They did a splendid job of skittling out Australia in Chennai for 199. But it becomes a gamble if India field second on a dew laden outfield under lights.
Pakistan captain Babar Azam admitted that when the team trained on Thursday evening, there was dew. Can Mohammad Shami come into the reckoning then? Not if the team management remains under an illusion that Shardul Thakur gives them batting depth. Pakistan will have worries of their own. Skipper Babar Azam was dismissed cheaply against the Netherlands and Sri Lanka, as was Imam-ul-Haq. Shaheen Shah Afridi hasn’t bowled with the nip that he did a few weeks ago.
Ahmedabad as a venue has seen historic firsts. The city hosted the first ODI in India (vs England in 1981 not in Motera though). Sunil Gavaskar became the first to cross 10000 Test runs vs Pakistan in 1987. Kapil Dev went past Richard Hadlee’s record of 431 Test wickets in 1994 vs Sri Lanka. Sachin Tendulkar scored his first double hundred in Tests in 1999 vs New Zealand. India beat Australia in a World Cup for the first time in 24 years in a pulsating 2011 quarterfinal here.