Just a day ahead of high-voltage India vs Pakistan Champions Trophy final match, BJP chief Amit Shah has given a big statement with respect to Indo-Pak cricket relations. Amit Shah on Saturday made it clear that India and Pakistan will continue to play at international tournaments but neither India will play in Pakistan, nor Pakistan will play in India. “Should India stop playing at international cricket tournaments now,” BJP President Amit Shah asked press persons when asked about India-Pakistan match in Champions Trophy 2017.
India’s remarkable consistency will be up against Pakistan’s legendary volatility when the fierce rivals clash in what is expected to be an exciting finale to the ICC Champions Trophy, in London on Sunday. The often tense political relations between the neighbouring nations add colour to the bitter yet intense rivalry, which has nowadays been confined only to global events due to the Indian government’s refusal to allow bilateral contests. Defending champions India had got the better of the rivals in the league stage of the ongoing tournament. And captain Virat Kohli has already declared that nothing extra is needed to get the same result despite the turnaround by Sarfraz Ahmed’s men since then. It is nonetheless a battle of attrition, where one needs to hold the nerve till the very end.
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On pure cricketing logic, Pakistan are no match for Virat Kohli’s men, who have some of the best exponents of limited overs cricket.
But just like in life, at times sporting realities defy logic which is exactly the reason why Sarfraz Ahmed’s team can’t be ruled out on a big day.
Defending the Champions Trophy will also be important as the on-field supremacy could also help India regain some lost ground off the field when the ICC Annual Conference starts a day after the final.
India: Virat Kohli (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Dinesh Karthik, Mohammed Shami, Ajinkya Rahane, Umesh Yadav.
Pakistan: Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), Ahmed Shahzad, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Mohammed Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Hasan Ali, Mohammed Amir, Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan, Imad Wasim, Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail.
Match will begin at 3 pm IST.