New Delhi: Having played a stellar role many a time in India-Pakistan clashes, all-rounder Irfan Pathan feels that the defending champions have a far superior unit and will do well against the arch-rivals in the high-voltage opening World Cup encounter on February 15 in Adelaide.
“I think India is going to do really well because I think they are a far superior side. Inshallah I am sure India are going to do well. Aur Irfan Pathan ki duaein bhi toh unke saath hain (My prayers are with the team),” Irfan told PTI in an interview.
Irfan, who was part of the 2007 World Cup team under Rahul Dravid, opines it is all about handling pressure in the 50-over showpiece event.
“There is lot of pressure involved in a World Cup. Because everyone is watching you, everyone’s talking about a World Cup, everyone wants the Cup back. And obviously people will talk about it because it comes every four years. So the pressure mounts four times.
“When I was in West Indies, we thought we had prepared well but unfortunate that things didn’t turn out the way we would have wanted to. So the pressure is always there and you have to handle it as much as you can,” said the Baroda southpaw.
Irfan, who became a star after making an impressive debut against Australia in 2003, also played his part in India’s inaugural World T20 triumph in 2007. He recalls the pressure of a World game and the memorable clashes with the Pakistani side.
“India-Pakistan game is always very special and is a pressure game. And if you playing in a World Cup then the pressure doubles. I recall one such pressure situation in the inaugural World T20 in South Africa when the India-Pak game was tied. We tried not to take pressure on ourselves in that situation. (MS) Dhoni was a new captain, the whole scenario was so new”, he said.