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Saurav Ganguly says Pakistan is a World Cup favourite

May 16, 2019

Former India cricket captain Sourav Ganguly believes Pakistan is among the favourites in as they have a remarkable record playing in England, especially during ICC events.

Ganguly says Pakistan, India, hosts England and Australia are likely to reach the semifinal of the prestigious tournament. He said Pakistan has always done well in England during world tournaments. They beat India in a multi-nation tournament in England in the final of 2017 Champions Trophy.

Pakistan's record in world tournaments in England is remarkable. They won the Champions Trophy two years ago, they won the 2009 World T20 in England. - - Saurav Ganguly, Former India cricket captain

Ganguly also pointed to the one day international played by Pakistan against England, in which they almost chased down a mammoth 374 before going down by only 12 runs.

"Pakistan always play well in England. You see the last game in England. England got 374 and Pakistan just lost by 12 runs. They also beat England in England in Test matches there because of their bowling lineup", said Ganguly.

Ganguly also said India are strong contenders and should not be scared of Pakistan. "I don't believe in records. Both of them will have to play well on that particular day. India will be a very good side. They will be very hard to beat. Team which has the likes of Kohli, Rohit, Shikhar Dhawan can't be weak."

The captaincy skills of Virat Kohli are under question after the Royal Challengers Bangalore's repeated losses in the Indian Premier League. But Ganguly said that Indian captaincy is a different ball game altogether and that Kohli's IPL captaincy will not have an impact in the World Cup as he has a good record as a one day international captain. "Don't compare Virat Kohli's IPL captaincy record with that of India. His captaincy records for India is very good actually. He's got him in his team as the vice-captain. Dhoni is there. So he's well supported," said Ganguly.

India, which is among the favourites, will be under tremendous pressure but Ganguly felt it would bring out the best from Kohli and Co. "It's good that India is under pressure, every other team in the World Cup will be under pressure. You don't want to turn up like a Nepal or an Ireland where the entire world thinks that you're not going to win...Virat, probably being the best player of the world at the moment, is as much under pressure as anybody else and that will be good for him because he will turn up, work hard, he will be pumped and get India going."

All 10 teams will play each other before the best four qualify for the knockouts. "It's a great World Cup because all 10 teams play against each other and the best four qualify. There are strong teams and you realise England, Pakistan, West Indies all can win. So it's good that India is under pressure because it will help them perform and it's going to be exciting 55 days of cricket," Ganguly said



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