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“India will be under pressure at their home ground,” says Hasan Ali

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AHMEDABAD: Pakistan’s right-arm pacer Hasan Ali asserted that hosts India will be under pressure at their home ground in the highly-anticipated PAK vs IND clash at the ICC World Cup 2023 on Saturday.

The most-anticipated fixture of this iteration of the ICC World Cup 2023 is upon us. Billions of cricket fans from around the world will tune in to watch great rivals, Pakistan and India, play at the biggest cricket stadium, the Narendra Modi Stadium here.

The contest will mark the first instance of Pakistan and India playing a One-Day International against each other on Indian soil after 10 years. Their last bilateral meeting resulted in Pakistan defeating the hosts 2-1.

Both sides enter this contest after wins in their opening matches.

India beat Australia in Chennai and Afghanistan in Delhi and Pakistan signed off their memorable trip to Hyderabad by recording the highest-ever chase in the history of the World Cup, thanks to gutsy centuries from Abdullah Shafique and Mohammad Rizwan, on Tuesday.

Babar Azam’s side kicked off their ICC World Cup 2023 campaign with a comfortable 81-run win over the Netherlands.

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Meanwhile, Hasan Ali, who played a pivotal role in Pakistan’s ICC Champions Trophy 2017 glory, claimed that pressure will be on India at their home ground while also expressing his confidence that the national team will break India’s winning streak against Pakistan in the 50-over World Cups.

“Records are meant to be broken and we too are looking forward to breaking this jinx of not having beaten India in a 50-over World Cup,” Hasan told PCB Digital.

“It is India who will be under pressure as it is their home ground with fans turning up to support them. There is always pressure in a big game like this but we will try to gain momentum early in the proceedings and win the contest.”

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Hasan Ali further shared on the eve of the high-octane PAK vs IND clash that starting the tournament with back-to-back wins has lifted the team’s confidence.

“Efforts like the record chase against Sri Lanka, boost the morale of a side,” Hasan, who is also Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker with six scalps at an average of 17.33, said.

“There were some fantastic individual and collective performances against the Netherlands and Sri Lanka. When you start a tournament with consecutive wins, it boosts your confidence.”

The excitement of the PAK vs IND contest is such that both countries come to a virtual standstill. Fans, not only in the two countries but also across the world, gear up to watch the two sides lock horns.

“This is the best [sporting] rivalry in the world,” Hasan said.

“Many players have already spoken about how everyone around the globe tunes into this match. The team is excited for this game, and so am I to play at a venue hosting fans in excess of 100,000. We are looking forward to the game.”

READ: PAK vs IND clash to kick off with star-studded ceremony

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