India vs Pakistan Prediction: Hosts can win this bitter rivalry

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The biggest match of the Cricket World Cup takes place on Saturday morning (09:30), as hosts India and their bitter rivals Pakistan face off at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. We’ve previewed this contest and given you our betting predictions. 

India vs Pakistan Betting Tips

  • India to win, highest 15 overs and hit most sixes – 9/5
  • Mohammed Rizwan to hit a 4 and a 6 – 13/5

Well… where to begin with this one?

I’ll spare you most of the politics but safe to say these two countries really don’t get along and have fought three wars since the partitioning of India, back in 1947. That bad blood has meant that India (4/9) and Pakistan (7/4) have played each other sparingly over the years and especially in recent times.

There was even talk of Pakistan boycotting this competition entirely, after India refused to play in Pakistan during the recent Asia Cup, however, a compromise was reached and India played their games in Sri Lanka instead, meaning Pakistan would line up at CWC2023.

All 132,000 tickets at the Narendra Modi stadium are of course sold out but this will be a weird, almost ethereal partisan atmosphere, as it will be virtually completely Indian, with Pakistan supporters unable to travel, due to Visa issues. Tickets are apparently reaching around 25,000 rupees (£250) on the resale market

On top of that, the Pakistani squad are under armed guard in their hotel and are forbidden from venturing into the city of Ahmedabad. So much for cricketing diplomacy…

Onto the actual game and both sides are in the top four in the table after a perfect start of two wins from two. Rohit Sharma’s men made short work of both Australia and Afghanistan and are living up to their tags as pre-tournament favourites.

Meanwhile, Babar Azam & Co. have chugged along nicely too, making hard work of it against the Netherlands, before completing a majestic chase to defeat Sri Lanka. This game is a step up for both nations though and it’s clear to see there are more than just bragging rights on the line here.

Team news

Shubman Gill will ‘definitely’ play according to India’s former chief selector MSK Prasad and should hopefully be back to his brilliant best after recovering from a troubling dengue fever, that kept him out of the first two games.  Mohammed Shami could come in to replace Mohammed Siraj after his expensive spell against Afghanistan.

India (from) : Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul (wk), Ishan Kishan, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Shardul Thakur, Jasprit Bumrah, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj

Imam-ul-Haq is under severe pressure to keep his place at the top of the order, following two failures with the bat and could be replaced by Fakhar Zaman.

Pakistan (from) : Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Salman Ali Agha, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Wasim

India to win, highest 15 overs and hit most sixes – 9/5

The odds on India to win are way too short for my liking in a match of this magnitude but I do expect them to win nonetheless.

The two sides have faced-off in seven previous World Cup fixtures with the Indians having a perfect 7-0 record to date.

India haven’t been properly tested yet so their scores haven’t been really high but they have scored quickly and have thrashed 11 sixes to Pakistan’s 8.

Mohammad Rizwan to hit a 4 and a 6 – 13/5

One man who has been responsible for three of those eight Pakistan maximums is their brilliant keeper Mohammad Rizwan.

The 31-year-old was magnificent in leading the Green Shirts’ run chase against Sri Lanka and made 131* despite battling severe cramps.

Rizwan looks in tremendous nick right now, scoring 199 runs in his opening two fixtures and his explosive style means this should hit if he can spend time at the crease.

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