India will beat Pakistan in ICC Champions Trophy: Sourav Ganguly to India Today

first_imgThe selectors led by MSK Prasad and Virat Kohli today picked the Indian team for the Champiosn Trophy, where they backed experience over youth. Proven match-winners in MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma were chosen as youngsters like Rishabh Pant and Sanju Samson missed out. Kohli’s team will begin their title defense against arch-rivals Pakistan on June 4 in Edgbaston and former India captain Sourav Ganguly has backed India to continue their impressive record against Pakistan in ICC tournaments.”India will beat Pakistan again in Champions Trophy,” said Sourav Ganguly to India Today.”In the last 8 to 10 years there has been a massive difference in the quality between India and Pakistan and that has been one of the major reasons why India has continued to dominate Pakistan (in ICC events). I believe India will do it again in the Champions Trophy in Birmingham on the 4th of June”, he added. India have never lost a World Cup encounter against our fiercest rivals. Our win-loss record against Pakistan in ODI and T20 World Cup matches in 11-nil.Including the Champions Trophy, this record is heavily tilted 12-2 in India’s favour. Such a level of dominance is rarely seen at the highest level of sport between traditional rivals. Ganguly says it is down to the way Team India has handled pressure in crunch situations.”In early part of the 90s and even in early 2000s, it is just that India played better than Pakistan in world tournaments because there was not much difference between the two sides as the Pakistan team was a fantastic unit then with the likes of Wasim (Akram), Waqar (Younis), Imzamam (ul-Haq), Saeed Anwar, Javed Miandad and Salim Malik. But 2005 onward the Pakistan team has not been the same as it used to be. They have lost to India on quality, they have lost to India on ability and somehow India has reacted to big match pressure much better than Pakistan.advertisementThe technique and quality of Indian players has been better than Pakistan. You see Pakistan there is rare brilliance but every time they have been under pressure they have tried to fight or hit their way out of pressure which has not worked for them. But every time you see India under pressure, they are a team which would seem have soaked in the pressure. They have batted and played difficult situations well and then have dominated during the course of a cricket match. But with Pakistan, every time they have been put under pressure by India with the ball or with the bat, they have tried to hit their way out and have not been successful”, explained Sourav who led India to a famous win over Pakistan in the 2003 World Cup at Centurion.The former India captain also gave his vote of confidence to Kohli, who attended what was arguably his most important selection meeting. A billion Indians will have their eyes on Kohli, expecting him to lead the team to victory not just against Pakistan but also to defend India’s title in England and Wales next month.”I think this is the best possible side at the moment and every player selects himself. Selectors did not have to pick or scratch or push one of the players to fill the 15 member squad. They will miss KL Rahul for sure and I think KL Rahul has been a wonderful player for India for the past two years but I think this is the best possible squad that is going to England and they have all the capacity and capability to defend their title”, concluded Ganguly.India’s first match in the Champions Trophy is against Pakistan on the June 4. The men in blue will also face Sri Lanka and South Africa in the group stage of the tournament.last_img

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