We have plans in place for Kohli, says Pakistan skipper Sarfraz

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We have plans in place for Kohli, says Pakistan skipper Sarfraz

Pakistan will rely on pace as they had targeted India with speed in the past, saying in 2012-13 when they won a ODI series 2-1.

"That was special. Kohli is a world class player and that gift has been special for me". Junaid Khan, Haris Sohail and Fakhar Zaman have been dropped from the squad, leaving Sarfraz Ahmed, Azhar Ali, Ahmed Shahzad, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Hafeez, Shadab Khan, Fahim Ashraf, Hassan Ali, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz. "Pakistan can beat anyone on their day". Pakistan's innings got off to a poor start with Indian seamers, led by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Ishant Sharma, making things hard for the opposition.

Kumble, whose contract as the head coach terminates after Champions Trophy, had a phenomenal record in the last season with the consecutive wins against major countries of the world like Australia, England, Sri Lanka, West Indies, New Zealand and Bangladesh.

For cricketers, it's just "another match" but for the die-hard fans, a win is not everything but the only thing that they expect from their heroes.

However, the alleged rift between skipper Virat Kohli and coach Anil Kumble and speculations over players" unhappiness with the "school-master' style functioning of the Indian legend has raised questions over the mood in the camp and how they are going to counter it in a high-pressure match.

"It's just happening again after 12 months". But it is not a phrase that might have been expected from Misbah-ul-Haq, and with a couple of new faces in the team - faces that India will not have seen - it may be that they have some element of surprise on their side.

The selection of the 15 by Inzamamul Haq and his team of selectors means Pakistan have only eight specialist batsmen to choose from. India is on its way to being one of the most important nations on earth, trying to go cashless while their leader sells out Madison Square Garden. The arch-rivals will lock horns with each other on Sunday at 02:30 PM (PST) at Birmingham's Edgbaston Cricket Ground.

Both Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are proven match-winners on their days and on good tracks they can be bullies. Shahdab Khan, the 18-year-old leg-spinner, has played only three ODIs, while Faheem Ashraf, the seam-bowling all-rounder who made a wonderful impression in the warm-up victory over Bangladesh, could make his global debut.

At No.3, there are no debates and the Indian captain already rates among the top four batsmen in world cricket along with Steve Smith, Kane Williamson and Joe Root. "The off-spinner has truly come of age and has become a pivotal part of India's recent successes across the three formats", The 37-year-old said. Of course, there are people who easily bet amounts like Rs10,000-20,000 on these, but when it is an India-Pakistan game, then the sky is the limit. But Bhuvneshwar, Bumrah, Shami and Umesh also combine to form a quality attack. "I carry on with my normal life", Kohli said, explaining how he has ignored reports on discontent in the Indian dressing room over Kumble.

At the time when Kumble was appointed as the head coach of the team, Kohli was the skipper of the test side but later assumed the helm in the limited overs cricket, following MS Dhoni's resignation as the captain. Mind games are an integral part of modern-day cricket and speaking on the eve of the match, Arthur said that it was crucial that the captain and coach share a good relation as that helps in keeping the team together. "The betting for the first over may start from Rs500 and with each passing over, and depending on how the match is going, the amount increases by double or triple".

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