Pakistan’s former leg-spinner Abdul Qadir has said that the much-anticipated match between the arch-rivals will be the most crucial match of the tournament.
“The outcome of India-Pakistan match will decide their future in the tournament. It will boost the morale of the winning team and give an additional edge as well. It will surely be a final before the final,” Qadir added.
Grouped in Pool B, India and Pakistan will open their campaign when they lock horns on February 15.
According to Qadir only one Asian team will make the semifinals of the quadrennial extravaganza.
“I think that Australia, New Zealand and South Africa will reach the last four and the last team will be from Asian subcontinent provided England does not give them serious competition,” Qadir said.
Regarding Indian team squad he said the Indian selectors have “committed a blunder” by ignoring experienced cricketers Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh for the upcoming ODI World Cup.
According to Qadir, 59, the presence of Sehwag and Yuvraj would have given the team liberty to play with four regular bowlers.
“I was surprised to see that but Asian teams have this habit of committing blunders. If you have players like Sehwag and Yuvraj in the team, it not only pressurises the opposition bowlers but also gives the option of playing with four regular bowlers,” Qadir said.
“Yuvraj had bowled brilliantly in the last World Cup where he was also the player of the tournament. I would have also liked to see leg spinners like Amit Mishra and Piyush Chawla in the team since India does not have intimidating pace bowlers,” said the former chief selector of PCB.