Pakistan captain Babar Azam admitted that “nerves” will play a role in their high-voltage clash against arch-rival India and is hopeful about lifting the T20 World Cup trophy once again. Pakistan won their maiden T20 World Cup accolade in 2009. Since then, the Men in Green have come close to tasting the success but fell short each time. With the World Cup already underway, Pakistan will be looking to end the drought by lifting the title in the ongoing edition. But before the tournament arrives at that stage, the headlines will belong to the clash between one of the oldest rivalries in cricket – India and Pakistan.

Last time, India edged out their neighbours following the heroics of Virat Kohli. Babar gave his take on the high-profile clash which will be played on June 9 in New York at the newly built Nassau County International Cricket Stadium.

“The whole world is focused on the day when the Pakistan-India match is held. Naturally, there will be nerves. It is always a pressure game,” Babar said while speaking on a Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) podcast.

In the last edition, Pakistan reached the final of the competition but fell short against England in a low-scoring affair.

Babar opened up about the expectations associated with the team’s chances of lifting the title and how it serves as a motivation for the entire team.

“Lifting the ICC trophy is a different motivation. You go to a different level and get a lot of praise. So, the motivation, aspiration and dream remain to lift an ICC trophy and present it to Pakistan,” Babar noted.

“I am happy and excited because when you go to play in a major event […] the hope is always to lift the trophy, but for that to happen, we have to play top cricket against every side,” he added.

Just like the majority of the teams, Pakistan lack knowledge of the playing conditions in the United States. Babar acknowledged the fact but revealed the measures that they have taken to prepare for their first instance playing in the US.

“We are in the process of collating various cricket and match-related information from players who have played there, which can help and assist us in our preparations,” he said.

Pakistan will kick off their campaign against the US on June 6. They will face arch-rival India on June 9 at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium, New York.

Pakistan T20 WC squad: Babar Azam (c), Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Abbas Afridi, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Khan.

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