Whenever India and Pakistan clash, the buzz is of a different level. And, although Virat Kohli has played down the hype, the fans of both nations are looking forward to the contest eagerly. As every Indian and Pakistan cricket lover will be aware by now, Pakistan has never defeated India in a World Cup, neither in the 50-over version or the T20 format. This is a record India will like to preserve and a jinx Pakistan will want to break.
India go in having done exceedingly well in the two warm-up clashes. They crushed England by seven wickets and Australia by eight. Their batting impressed against the Englishmen as they chased down a target of 189 with utter ease. In the game against Australia, their bowlers also did a very good job, restricting the opponents to 152 for 5. The batters yet again came to the party as India won convincingly.
Pakistan had a mixed time in the practice games. They had no issues getting past a below-par West Indies. After strangling them to 130 for 7, they chased down the target by seven wickets with plenty of overs in hand. While their batting did well against South Africa, scoring a competitive 186, their bowlers were taken to the task by the Proteas, who defeated Pakistan by six wickets. South Africa needed 19 off the final over but got there courtesy some fantastic hitting by Rassie van der Dussen as Hasan Ali crumbled under pressure.
India's Predicted XI: KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli (C), Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Varun Chakravarthy
India could go in with Suryakumar Yadav ahead of Ishan Kishan and Varun Chakravarthy ahead of Rahul Chahar.
Pakistan's Predicted XI: Babar Azam (C), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Nawaz, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf
Babar Azam could hold the key for Pakistan with the bat and Shaheen Afridi with the ball.
Top fantasy picks for India vs Pakistan clash: KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Shaheen Afridi
--Renin Wilben Albert