Believe we have batters who are capable of handling Pakistan bowling attack, says Uthappa

Sports |  IANS  | Published :

New Delhi, Sep 7 (IANS) Ahead of India’s Super Four clash against Pakistan in the Asia Cup on September 10 in Colombo, former cricketer Robin Uthappa believes the side’s batting line-up can handle the arch-rivals bowling line-up.

The first match-up between India and Pakistan ended in a washout due to rain at Pallekele, though the Rohit Sharma-led side made 266 in 48.5 overs. In that match, Hardik Pandya made 87 off 90 balls while Ishan Kishan slammed 82 off 81 deliveries as the duo helped India overcome a top-order collapse.

Electing to bat first, India were reduced to 66-4, before Kishan and Pandya stepped up in a pressure situation to stitch an important 138-run partnership. For Pakistan, pacers Shaheen Shah Afridi (4-35), Naseem Shah (3-36) and Haris Rauf (3-58) were amongst the wicket-takers in that game.

"Well, they do have some quick and skilled bowlers, and Shaheen Shah Afridi has been in amazing form recently. Haris Rauf is also performing well. That being said, I believe we have batters in our team who are capable of handling all of them,” said Uthappa on JioCinema’s sports show ‘#AAKASHVANI’.

Abhishek Nayar, the former India cricketer, expects Rohit & Co to do well against Pakistan after last week’s game. "If they have pace, we have batsmen who can utilize that pace. We have seen how Virat Kohli batted in the World Cup.”

“I don't think anyone has an upper hand; both teams are very good. But we all know that under pressure, India has always performed better, and I expect the same in the near future.”

RP Singh, the former left-arm pacer, emphasized that the India-Pakistan clash is between the best bowling line-up and the best batting line-up. "They might have a slight upper hand in their bowling department, and we also have injury concerns."

"Their three fast bowlers, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, and Naseem, all bowl around 150 km/h so in terms of bowling, they seem a bit better. We can watch these matches as a showdown between the best bowling line-up and the best batting line-up."

On Wednesday, Haris Rauf picked a fiery four-wicket haul in leading Pakistan bowling out Bangladesh for just 193 in their first Super Four game at Lahore, setting the base for a seven-wicket victory.

Apart from Rauf’s 4-17, Naseem Shah, despite a right shoulder injury scare, picked 3-34, followed by Shaheen Shah Afridi, Iftikhar Ahmed and Faheem Ashraf taking a wicket each on a flat pitch.

"It was a very flat track and the Pakistani trio Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, and Naseem Shah bowled incredibly well to pick up wickets there. Their fast bowling is absolutely top-class. They didn’t even let Bangladesh reach a target of 200 in an absolute road like surface,” noted former player Aakash Chopra.

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