T20 World Cup: Want to make a positive start by beating India, says Babar Azam
- India take on Pakistan on Oct. 24 in Dubai
- Pakistan have never beaten India in a World Cup game
- The T20 World Cup is due to begin on Sunday (Oct. 17)
India and Pakistan have been drawn in Group 2, along with New Zealand, Afghanistan and two qualifier teams in the Super 12s of the T20 World Cup, which is due to commence on Oct. 17.
India and Pakistan face off on Oct. 24 at the Dubai International Cricket Ground. The arch-rivals have met five times in the T20 World Cup with the Men in Blue winning four games while one game produced no result. Overall, Pakistan are yet to defeat India in a World Cup fixture (Cricket World Cup and T20 World Cup).
Going into the upcoming T20 World Cup, Virat Kohli and Co are one of the favourites, while Pakistan's preparations were severely hit after New Zealand and England cancelled their limited-overs tours to the country due to security concerns.
"Our morale is high and we want to make a positive start to the tournament by winning the opening game against India. Gaining momentum at the start of the tournament will help in improving the confidence of the team," Babar was quoted as saying by Cricket Pakistan.
The Pakistan skipper also confirmed that he will be opening the batting along with his deputy Mohammad Rizwan throughout the tournament.
"I will open the innings with Rizwan during the World Cup but we can change our plans after looking at the conditions," added Babar before mentioning how important the veteran duo of Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafeez will be to Pakistan's chances.
"Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik are match-winners and their experience will help us on the field," said Babar.
Babar is set to play his maiden T20 World Cup and the fact that he will be captaining Pakistan makes it even more special for the batsman, who will turn 27 on Friday (Oct. 15). He recently surpassed the 2,000-mark in the T20Is and became the fastest player to the 2,000-mark in the T20Is. Babar took 52 innings to the landmark, four fewer than India captain Kohli. The Pakistan batsman has scored 2,204 runs in 61 T20Is at an average of 46.89.