ICC T20 WC 2021, IND vs PAK: Matthew Hayden terms the superhit face-off as a dogfight!

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ICC T20 WC 2021, IND vs PAK: Pakistan’s batting Consultant Matthew Hayden on Thursday opens up on India vs Pakistan clash by terming the much-anticipated clash as a ‘dogfight’. He further said that pressure will be on Babar Azam but one team could not run away with the game.

He went on to explain that both the teams will produce their best performance & good leadership will be the key to winning this nerve-triggering contest.  “One side is not going to run away with the game here. It’s a dogfight. The conditions and margins for error will be very little. And so, good leadership will be the key”.

Matthew Hayden further discussed Babar Azam’s role in the team & termed him as the backbone of Pakistan’s squad. He said that pressure will be on Babar, both as a batsman and captain, as he will be the oppositions’ main target.

“He will be the person who every player would want to put in his pockets. There will be pressure on him both as a captain and as a batsman. But I sense that the way he will go about with it will be spot on,” he added.

Shedding some light on the age-old India Pakistan rivalry Hayden said, “Nothing that I have ever seen through the various elements of our game ever matches the rivalry of India and Pakistan. There is an obvious pressure much like the pressure that’s there when you play against England for Australia. But the pressure is only as much as you allow it to be. Your preparation is there, your experience is there, your opportunity now becomes a history-making opportunity.”

Hayden has closely observed Indian cricket over the years & believes that KL Rahul & Rishabh Pant possess the biggest threat to Pakistan in their opening clash on 24th October.

“More or less I have watched KL Rahul grow & he is a major threat to Pakistan. I have watched him grow up as a boy. I have seen his struggles & his dominance in shorter formats”.

Speaking about Rishabh Pant’s prowess, Hayden said, “I have seen someone like Rishabh Pant, his brash nature & beautiful vision for the game, how he has destroyed bowling attacks because he got the opportunity because he sees it that way”.

Earlier Misbah-Ul-Haq & Waqar Younis had stepped down from their respective roles in the Pakistan squad. After their exit, Matthew Hayden and Vernon Philander were appointed as Pakistan’s batting and bowling consultants for the T20 World Cup. Speaking about his appointment as Pakistan’s batting coach, Matthew Hayden said that he had never thought in his dream that he would take up such a crucial role with the Pakistan team.

“I would have never thought in my wildest dream that I would be sitting inside the Pakistan dressing room”, said Hayden.

India won both the warm-up matches ahead of the T20 World Cup while Pakistan lost one and won one. The Men in Blue defeated England by seven wickets while the side registered a nine-wicket triumph over Australia. Both the arch-rivals will start their T20 World Cup 2021 Campaign on 24th October at the Dubai International Stadium.

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