T20 World Cup: Matthew Hayden reveals biggest 'threat' to Pakistan, highlights key in Indo-Pak clash

WION Web Team
New Delhi, IndiaUpdated: Oct 21, 2021, 05:56 PM IST

File Photo: India vs Pakistan Photograph:(AFP)

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Commenting on the Virat Kohli-led team, Hayden said having followed Indian cricket very closely over the years as he revelled which Indian batters will pose threats to the Pakistan team

Former Australia cricketer Matthew Hayden has weighed in on the high-octane T20 World Cup clash between India and Pakistan, which is scheduled to be held on Sunday (October 24). Hayden, who is working with the Pakistan team as a batting consultant, said that leadership will be key and as conditions in UAE leave "very little margin for error". 

During a media interaction, Hayden said, "I feel leadership will be key in the coming match as conditions in UAE leave very little margin for error and there are dogfight conditions out there."

Citing examples of MS Dhoni and Eoin Morgan from the recently concluded Indian Premier League (IPL), where both the players led their teams — Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) — with success when their own individual performances were not at expected levels. 

"Their individual performances were not as good as they have previously done as per their statistical records but the way they led their troops and conducted themselves played an important part in their teams reaching the IPL final in UAE conditions," Hayden said. 

Commenting on the Virat Kohli-led team, Hayden said having followed Indian cricket very closely over the years, he believes that KL Rahul and Rishab Pant pose the biggest threat to Pakistan in the match. 

"More or less I have watched KL Rahul grow and he is a major threat to Pakistan. I have watched him grow up as a boy. I have seen his struggles and his dominance in shorter formats.

"I have seen someone like Rishab Pant, his brash nature and beautiful vision for the game, how he has destroyed bowling attacks because he has got the opportunity because he sees it that way," Hayden added. 

Hayden said Pakistan captain Babar Azam had a role to play in the match as a leader and a premium batter.

"There will be additional pressure on him as captain and batsman because he will be targeted and everyone will be wanting to, like they say, put him in their pocket. Babar has command and presence and he needs to fulfil that role in a batting sense and captain."

India vs Pakistan clash:

The bilateral series between India and Pakistan has been suspended due to political reasons and previously, the arch-rivals met at the 2019 World Cup in England, where India won against Pakistan and maintained their unbeaten record in World Cups. 

Expressing his thoughts on the much-anticipated clash, Hayden said that having watched the various elements of the game and been part of it he can say that nothing matches the rivalry between Pakistan and India.

"For an Australian obviously the Ashes and matches against England are tops but nothing matches the rivalry of these two teams," said Hayden.