BIRMINGHAM: Though the result would only be of academic interest but excitement and interest of cricket fans is at its peaks as traditional rivals Pakistan and India take on each other in their final Group B match of the Champions Trophy here on Saturday.
When the Champions Trophy tickets went online for sale in April this year, it took all of 30 minutes for the allocated tickets to be lapped up. The insatiable demand from Indian and Pakistani fans will mean today’s game will be more than a dead rubber.
Birmingham is the second most populous city outside of London. The city is home to a chunky mass of Asian expats whose voracious appetite for cricket has always seen Edgbaston wearing its prettiest frock when India and Pakistan play.
At least 90 per cent of the 25,000 capacity crowd is expected to be divided between the sub-continental cricket giants.
Champions Trophy history is, of course, siding with Pakistan. They have never lost to India in six editions of this event.
Pakistan: Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Nasir Jamshed, Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Farhat, Kamran Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Asad Shafiq, Saeed Ajmal, Junaid Khan, M. Irfan, Asad Ali, Wahab Riaz, Umer Amin, Abdul Rehman, Ehsan Adil.
India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Ravichandran Ashwin, Shikhar Dhawan, Ravindra Jadeja, Dinesh Karthik, Virat Kohli, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Amit Mishra, Irfan Pathan, Suresh Raina, Ishant Sharma, Rohit Sharma, Murali Vijay, Vinay Kumar, Umesh Yadav.
Match starts 2:30pm (PST).