Indian captain Virat Kohli had said in press conference before leaving for England that the team will approach theor Champions Trophy opener against Pakistan in the same way they would have for any other team. But former Pakistan captain Waqar Younis said that an India-Pakistan match always puts pressure on players from both sides, particularly since these fixtures have become less frequent.
“The less frequent these India versus Pakistan matches become, the more pressure there is on the players,” said Waqar by PakPassion website, “These matches now come around once in three to four years so everyone is waiting with baited breath for these games. The players on both sides will feel pressure, irrespective of what they say in the media, and whether it’s young Shadab Khan or the experienced Virat Kohli, they will be nervous.”
Waqar recalled the times when he used to be part of the Pakistan teams that played India and said that it was hard to “sleep the night before.”
“I recall the matches I played against India. I always felt the pressure,” he said, “It was hard to sleep the night before. However, that’s where you get tested and you can show your mettle. This is the time and the place to become a hero. It’s a big challenge, but those who stand up to its will come out on top.”
India and Pakistan play each other in their first match of the 2017 Champions Trophy tournament on June 4. While Pakistan have played both their warm-up matches in the Champions Trophy, India play Bangladesh in their second warm-up.