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Former India batsman Gautam Gambhir opined that India will have a kind of home advantage while going into the T20 World Cup, even over arch-rivals Pakistan, whom they face on October 24 in Dubai. The two titans will clash in the opening match of Group 2, which also consists of New Zealand, Afghanistan, and two other qualifying teams.
Since Pakistan players have played plenty of cricket in the UAE over the past decade and a half, it is believed that they will have the home advantage of the conditions. However, Gautam Gambhir feels otherwise.
He underlined that the Indian players will be going in the tournament with a month’s experience in those conditions while playing in the second half of the IPL 2021. They had also played the entire IPL 2020 season in the UAE, and hence, have understood the conditions very well over time. Pakistan have never defeated India in a World Cup encounter.
“It is very difficult to predict in the T20 format but if you say Pakistan plays a lot of cricket in the UAE, I feel India will have the home advantage because you would have played one month of the IPL in the UAE,” Gautam Gambhir was quoted as saying by Times Now News.
Intensity and quality in the IPL is equivalent to any international cricket or even better: Gautam Gambhir
Further, Gautam Gambhir stated the importance of the IPL. He reckoned that it would indeed with advantageous for Indian players to go with IPL experience in the World Cup, as, he reckoned, the quality of cricket in the IPL is even better than in many international series.
The former opener added that playing against teams like Sri Lanka or South Africa, both sides who are weak compared to other top international teams, wouldn’t do much good to Team India than playing high-level cricket in the IPL.
“At the same time, when you go into the World Cup after playing a tournament of IPL’s quality, you are better prepared. If you go after playing a bilateral series, you are not as well prepared as you are after playing the IPL.
“The intensity and quality of cricket in the IPL, I feel it is equivalent to any international cricket or even better. Imagine if you go into the World Cup after playing South Africa or Sri Lanka, or after playing the IPL, you will be better prepared by playing the IPL. So, the home advantage will be in India’s favor as compared to Pakistan or any other country,” the 2007 T20 World Cup winner opined.