Gautam Gambhir, a former Indian opener said that the responsibility will be huge on Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma after India and Pakistan were drawn in Group 2 of the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman. The former India opener reckoned that the senior players will have to control the nerves of the youngsters in the high-pressure match.
Gautam Gambhir, who top-scored with 75 in India’s win in the final against Pakistan in the inaugural T20I World Cup in 2007 feels it is the responsibility of the seniors to keep the youngster teammates calm and composed in the high octane match.
Gautam Gambhir: It’s The Responsibility Of Seniors To Keep Youngsters Calm
The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Friday announced the groups for the Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 to be hosted by the BCCI in Oman and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from October 17 to November 14. India and Pakistan have been placed in Group 2 of the Super 12s.
“When I played my first international game against Pakistan I was probably much more excited and nervous as compared to some of the guys who have played a lot of cricket against Pakistan. So, it is the responsibility of the senior guys to probably keep the younger guys calm,” Gambhir said on Star Sports show ICC T20 World Cup Special.
“Because ultimately it is not the emotion that will win you a game of cricket, it is the contest between the bat and the ball that will end up winning you a game of cricket. So people like Virat Kohli for example, or Rohit Sharma will have a huge responsibility when India take on Pakistan,” he added.
Gautam Gambhir was part of the twin India’s World Cup wins in 2007 and 2011 and has been part of several high-octane clashes with Pakistan. This will be the first T20I World Cup since 2016 when West Indies beat England in the final in Kolkata.
Robin Uthappa: Every Cricketer Looks Forward To An India And Pakistan Game
Former India batsman Robin Uthappa, who was part of the Indian team which won the inaugural T20 World Cup in South Africa, said that all the cricketers of India look forward to playing against Pakistan in their careers.
“It just brings out so many emotions, expectations and people always look forward to it. I think, any cricketer who has played in the past or anyone who looks to play for India is always looking forward to an India-Pakistan game,” said Uthappa.
“Because it brings out a lot of emotions – at least for the people who watch the game, more than the people playing it,” he added.
Both Gautam Gambhir and Robin Uthappa also spoke on how Team India should get rid of its “obsession” with 2007 and 2011 World Cup wins.
“It was special (being a part of the 2007 T20 World Cup squad), but I have forgotten about it. To be honest, India needs to move on from that. 2007, it’s what, more than 13 years ago and I think we need to get rid of this obsession of 2007 and 2011,” said Gambhir.
“Of course, for me personally, it is a special moment, but I tend to agree with Gautam Gambhir. I think we have achieved that in 2007, so we know that is achievable,” said Uthappa.
Group 2 will comprise former champions India and Pakistan, apart from New Zealand, Afghanistan, and the other two qualifiers from Round 1. Eight teams will contest the first round including automatic qualifiers Sri Lanka and Bangladesh with the remaining six who booked their spot through the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Qualifier 2019.
Ireland, Netherlands, and Namibia join Sri Lanka in Group A, whilst Oman, PNG, and Scotland will face Bangladesh in Group B. Group 1 features England, Australia, West Indies, South Africa, Winner of Group A, and Runner Up of Group B.