Ahead of the much-talked about and much-hyped India versus Pakistan cricket match at Adelaide Oval, the Indian team captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni while addressing the media ahead of the epic clash has urged his team to forget their losing streak in Australia. The defending champions have endured a miserable three months on tour in Australia where they were beaten 2-0 in the Tests and did not win a match in the subsequent tri-series, thus raising serious doubts about retaining the World Cup yet again.
But Dhoni said that high-voltage clash against Pakistan, which he described as a “prized game” on the cricket calendar, was an opportunity for players to transform themselves from zeroes to heroes. “There is of course more intensity when we play Pakistan because the game is followed by so many fans,” the Indian captain said. “But I see it as a good platform for the team to perform.”
“We need to forget the past and try not to make the same mistakes. It’s been a long summer but the positive thing is that we have got used to the conditions. The boys are looking good. I can also proudly announce that all 15 are fit and available for selection — unless something happens between now and tomorrow.”
Dhoni said he did not need to calm nerves ahead of the key encounter, explaining his players were used to appearing before huge crowds in the Indian Premier League and during other high-profile home games. A sell-out crowd of 47,000 at the refurbished Adelaide Oval and millions of passionate fans across the world will follow the Pool B match which organisers said was sold out in 20 minutes.
Dhoni played down repeated questions about India’s impressive 5-0 record World Cup record against Pakistan, saying what mattered more was how the team played on the given day. “All I know is that I am asked a lot of questions about the record,” he said. “Look, I am not bothered about statistics because what happened in the past will count for little in what is a prized game for all. It’s nice for fans and the media to talk about it, but for us the only thing that will matters is how we play.”
A winning start for either team will surely boost their chances of clinching one of the four quarter-final spots from a pool which also includes South Africa, West Indies, Ireland, Zimbabwe and minnows United Arab Emirates.
Watch video: Find out what Indian cricket fans have to say about the India vs Pakistan World Cup 2015 cricket match