ABU DHABI: Despite the pressure on the team ahead of the blockbuster clash against India in the Asia Cup, Pakistan skipper Babar Azam said that his team will miss the ace pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi and it would have been a different match if Shaheen had played the T20I tournament.
Men in Green will take on India on Sunday in their opening game of the T20I tournament.
So far, both sides have locked horns on nine occasions in T20I matches. India has an edge overall, with wins in seven matches out of these.
Pakistan has won only two. Before the start of the Asia Cup 2022, both teams have injury concerns.
Pakistan will be playing without Shaheen Shah Afridi, whereas India are without Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel.
"Shaheen is one of our best bowlers, he bowls with aggression and he leads the attack, so we will miss him. If Shaheen was there, it would have been a different game. But our other bowlers are also good, we have high confidence in the camp," said Babar during a press conference.
Further talking about playing against the arch-rivals India in their opening match of the tournament, Babar said: "The heat is not there. It is not normal, as a professional you have to adjust to everything. For me, every match is important and as captain, it is my job to give 100 per cent and we just try to give our best. The T20 World Cup match has passed, it would be a new day tomorrow. You have the confidence, but it all boils down to the game day."
During the practice session players of all the countries participating in this tournament exchanged greeting, when asked about this Babar said, "As a sportsman, you try to meet different players. We have met everyone, it is normal. You try and talk to players about cricket and other things."
"Everyone waits for the match between India and Pakistan. It is important to enjoy this game. Our bench strength is strong, injuries can happen, and it is part and parcel. I have faith in every player," Babar said about the upcoming match.