Brian Lara has stated that India will have the upper hand against Pakistan if the rain stays away in Manchester and believes the bowlers will do the job. Lara has also added that KL Rahul is the most technically-gifted batsman in the Indian team and the team were better placed with him at No.4.
If the weather forecast for tomorrow has anything to go by, another wash-out is on the cards and this time, the loss will be unbearable for the ICC considering India and Pakistan are supposed to lock horns. While India are in fine form, Pakistan have been on an up and down ride, and seem more mercurial than ever. Brian Lara, offering his two cents on the issue, has stated that India will enjoy the upper hand if the unpredictable decides not to throw an oddball
“If rain stays away, my money is on India maintaining their winning World Cup record against Pakistan. India is strong in all departments. Jasprit Bumrah is the best limited-overs fast bowler in the world, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar is very good too. And then they have two brilliant spinners in Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav,” Lara wrote in a column for the Hindu.
After Shikhar Dhawan’s injury, India has been thrown a very difficult job of rearranging their order. While KL Rahul is certain to open the innings with Rohit Sharma, Vijay Shankar may be drafted into the playing XI. Lara believes it worked against India’s plans as Rahul, who he terms the most technically-gifted batsman in the Indian team, could have handled the middle order in the event of a top-order collapse.
“It's sad to see that Shikhar Dhawan is out with an injury. With him in the team, you had a strong No.4 in K.L Rahul. In my opinion, Rahul is the most technically-gifted batsman in the Indian team. In the event of a top-order collapse, Rahul can repair the damage. If the top-order clicks, you can move Hardik Pandya up to No.4 to get quick runs. The batting-order was perfectly placed before Dhawan’s injury.
“Nevertheless, India has batting match-winners all the way down to No.7. If I’m in the opposition team meeting, I would say, “My gosh! India’s batting problems start only at No.8”. In most cases, it is the batsmen who turn out to be match-winners. If not, you can always count on the fantastic Indian bowling attack to defend any target. These are early days in the World Cup, but I am yet to see any weakness in the Indian team,” Lara concluded.
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