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Advantage Pakistan, Admits Babar Azam Ahead Of IND Vs PAK Super Four Match In Asia Cup 2023

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Before Asia Cup 2023, Pakistan played three ODIs against Afghanistan in Sri Lanka. Before that, majority of the Pakistan players were a part of Lanka Premier League 2023.

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Babar Azam is all smiles during Pakistan’s training session ahead of India clash. (Image: Twitter)

Colombo: Pakistan captain Babar Azam admitted that the recent experience of playing in the Island nation has put them in an advantageous position before the India clash in the Super Four stage of the ongoing Asia Cup 2023 on Sunday. Both sides have met once before on the group stage but the match had to be abandoned due to rain.

Pakistan came into Asia Cup 2023 with a 3-0 whitewash of Afghanistan on Sri Lankan soil. Moreover, the majority of their players were a part of the Lanka Premier League last month. “Given the continuous cricket we are playing both in Pakistan and Sri Lanka, you can say that we hold an edge (over India),” said Babar in the pre-match press conference.

“We have been playing here in Sri Lanka for the past two months or so. We have played Tests, we played a series against Afghanistan and then the LPL… So it can be said that we have an advantage.”

With the Asia Cup 2023 being held in two countries – Sri Lanka and Pakistan, Babar’s side had to travel a lot, but the right-handed batter did not read too much into it. “We always knew the schedule and how much we have to travel.

“So, it’s become important how we look after our players. We have planned everything well,” he said. Pakistan pacers have been doing exceedingly well in the Asia Cup as Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah have so far taken 23 wickets among them.

However, Babar exhorted his spinners to join the party in the middle overs so that the pressure applied on opponents does not slip. “Yes, we get a good start (with the ball) and the plan always is to bowl good in middle overs.

“The effort is to have an effective combination. We need wickets in the middle overs but we are not getting them. But you can see that we are finishing good. Our pacers are doing well at the end. This is a team performance. If someone fails, then another bowler chips in,” he said.

This is the second time India and Pakistan are meeting each other in the tournament after their league match at Pallekele ended in a washout. Babar hoped the weather would stay clear on Sunday. “We are focusing on what is in our control. The way the sun is beaming, I don’t think it will rain a lot (tomorrow). We are trying to do as much practice as we can,” he added.

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