Misbah hopeful of beating India in World Cup opener


On February 15, Misbah-ul-Haq will become the sixth captain to lead Pakistan cricket team in World Cup match against traditional rival India and hopes to become the only one to pull a triumph against their nemesis.

“Every match is important for us but our fans want us to win the match against India and we are very focused to pull victory against India and break the world cup jinx,” Misbah said before leaving for New Zealand Tuesday night.

Pakistan met India five times but has never been able to overcome neighboring team in a world cup encounter. The first time the two sides clashed was in 1992; the eventual world cup winners, Pakistan was captained by Imran Khan. They again clashed in 1996 edition, when Aamer Sohail was a stand-in captain for Wasim Akram in a quarterfinal encounter. Wasim led the side in 1999 in the match while Waqar Younis was captain in 2003 match. Shahid Afridi led the team during the semifinal defeat in 2011.

Pakistan cricket team left for New Zealand where they are scheduled to play two ODIs on January 31 and February 3 against hosts. Pakistan will also play two warm-ups against Bangladesh and England before facing India in their World Cup opener on February 15.

“We prepared well for the tournament and did everything in our capacity. All I want is that our team put their best and should not worry about results,” he said.

“We are passionate to beat India and I hope we do that,” he reiterated.