It’s the match that fans, organizers and advertisers have been fantasizing about, and the fact that it will be Pakistan’s first match on Indian soil since 26/11 lends an extra edge, if any was needed.
The bad news first: Pakistan are on a dream run. They thrive on confidence and momentum, and given current form look hard to beat. Besides, India have played Pakistan in ODIs twice at this venue in the past, in 1999 and 2007, and lost on both occasions.
But this is the World Cup, where India have never lost to Pakistan. Not once, over four pulsating encounters.
Interestingly, Australian captain Ricky Ponting, whose side lost to both the teams, backed India to beat Pakistan.
Imran Khan, the only Pakistani captain to lift the Cup, however believes the pressure of playing Pakistan at home may prove too much for India.
At first glance, it seems to be Pakistan’s bowling vs India’s batting. But ultimately, it could be about who wins the battle of nerves. Both sides are battle-hardened, and unlikely to blink first.