For the second time this tournament, these two cricketing giants will meet and its in this year’s Champions Trophy final.
We expected fireworks from India, but you could not foresee Pakistan’s place in the final after they were woefully downed by Virat Kohli’s India in their first match.
So, India find themselves in an odd predicament heading into the final. With their top three excelling with the bat, their middle order’s form remains a mystery. We will repeat ourselves and back Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli to score big for India.
Picking one is what makes this fun and with it being a final, we fancy Kohli to score the most runs tomorrow. Back him to be India’s Top Batsman at 13/5 with Betway, and also (more safely) to outscore opposite number Babar Azam at 3/5 with Betway.
We’d also recommend backing Dhawan to hit a Six at 7/4 with Betway. It looks like incredible value considering he’s smashed one in all four games so far this tournament.That said, it will be interesting if Pakistan can make dents into their middle order.
Much of that responsibility lies at the feet of Hasan Ali. The tournament’s top wicket taker has to be on form if Pakistan are to stand a chance against this intimidating Indian line-up. As Pakistan skittled through England, contributions from Junaid Khan and debutant Rumman Raees supplemented Ali’s magic handily. Mohammed Amir is back in contention and all the pre-match speculation suggests that he will play, but a punt on Hasan Ali to be Pakistan’s Top Bowler at 5/2 with Betway would be a punt well-considered.
In their first match this tournament, Pakistan were ruined, left soiled and with little hope for the tournament. As they were bowled all out for 164, it was only opener Azhar Ali who offered any resistance with a modest 50. They’ve come on a lot since that day, with significant inputs from Babar Azam, newly promoted Fakhar Zaman and captain Sarfraz Ahmed.
Unfortunately for Micky Arthur’s side, we expect India to be too much for this Pakistani batting side. Picking one, we would stick with Azhar Ali who comes off the back of a handy 76 against England. His technical ability means that he might just stick around if others topple around him, so back Ali to score Over 29.5 Runs at 5/6 with Betway, whilst we’d also recommend backing him to be Pakistan’s Top Batsman at 3/1 with Betway.
Finally, there is the challenge of Indian bowling. As they limited Bangladesh to 264, Bhuv Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah combined with two wickets apiece. It was Umesh Yadav last time out against Pakistan, but seemingly dropped in favour of spin with Ravichandran Ashwin, we expect India to line up with the same side that beat Bangladesh.
Should it be a tight contest, we would fancy Jasprit Bumrah’s awkward bowling to prevail… but in truth, we would back Kumar’s steadiness to frustrate Pakistani batting and take the most wickets for the men in blue. The wickets have been shared out fairly with India making it difficult to take that gamble. Back Bhuv Kumar to take Over 1.5 Wickets at 13/20 with Betway.
It has to be India’s game. They’ve dominated this fixture to date and though Pakistan have overcome the odds to reach this stage, the professionalism and all-roundedness of this India side means that you can’t really look past them.
Pakistan are an all or nothing type of outfit, but we fear that even with their all, they don’t quite have the firepower to sink this Indian battleship. Take India -3.5 Wickets/27.5 Runs at 17/20 with Betway.