India are in the driver's seat against Pakistan: Chris Gayle

08:17 PM Jun 08, 2024 | PTI |

New York: Legendary West Indian cricketer Chris Gayle has pinned the tag of favourites on India ahead of their marquee T20 World Cup match against Pakistan here on Sunday.


India made a sound start to the ICC showpiece with a win over Ireland, while Pakistan were derailed by a charged co-hosts USA in the Super Over.

“Their (Pakistan) backs are up against the wall and coming off a loss like that straight into playing a team like India, who traditionally have the upper hand in these games, is a huge challenge,” Gayle told ICC.

But Gayle said it would be naive to expect a cold contest between the cross-border rivals.

“India are in the driver’s seat, definitely a more relaxed seat. But this is India versus Pakistan at a World Cup, so you can take nothing for granted,” he added.


The dashing Jamaican said Pakistan, though, will have to regroup quickly to challenge India.

“As for Pakistan, they have no time to waste. They have to re-group for the biggest game of the tournament against India in New York City – that’s just got even bigger,” he said.

However, Gayle feels USA beating Pakistan would take the game of cricket forward.

“Like the rest of the cricketing world, I was gripped by the USA’s victory over Pakistan. It is a huge result which is not only incredible for them but massive for cricket as a whole.

“You always expect a few upsets at World Cups and having started well by beating Canada, USA put Pakistan under the pump for pretty much the whole game. I think it marks the day the World Cup really started,” he noted.

The former Windies skipper said this tournament holds massive importance for his country, which had failed to qualify for last year’s 50-over World Cup held in India.

“Having not qualified for the last ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, this tournament is so important for cricket in the Caribbean.

“This is a huge thing for the players to step up and be counted,” he added.


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