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India will play Pakistan in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy final at the Oval in London on Sunday. The former reached the final after a nine-wicket win over Bangladesh on Thursday, while Pakistan beat England by eight wickets on Wednesday.
It means defending champion India has a chance to retain the trophy they won in 2016. However, Pakistan made a statement when they sent host England packing, showcasing some formidable bowling talent.
Before a preview, here are the schedule and viewing details:
Date: Sunday, June 18
Time: 10 a.m. BST/5 a.m. ET.
TV Info: Sky Sports 2
Live Stream: Sky Go
One obvious danger man for Pakistan is Fakhar Zaman. He has hit two half-centuries in a row to help his nation reach the final.
Zaman was stumped against England, but only after a prolific innings, per Sky Sports Cricket:
Sky Sports Cricket🏏 @SkyCricket
WICKET! Rashid strikes as Fakhar (57 off 58) is beaten by a googly and stumped by Buttler. Pak 118-1 on SS2: https://t.co/eFKY0K71Lq #CT17 https://t.co/zcm1dl1WMF
Of course, if Zaman is one to watch for Pakistan, India can claim their own in the batting order. Specifically, Rohit Sharma was the standout performer with a ton against Bangladesh, according to ESPNcricinfo:
The Man of the Match is Rohit Sharma!
https://t.co/QbN3nx13ln #BANvIND #CT17 https://t.co/ZWkx3rcXnA
Sharma isn’t the only marquee batsman Pakistan should be worried about, though. There is also Shikhar Dhawan, the competition’s leader in runs with 317, per the tournament’s official website.
While Sharma and Dhawan have been in dominant form lately, India can always rely on the class of veteran Virat Kohli. The 28-year-old set a one-day international milestone during the win over Bangladesh:
Virat Kohli smashes his way to another ODI milestone record, but will Hashim Amla beat this record as well?
https://t.co/yqgjrevgaA #CT17 https://t.co/0BxchAdHA0
It was Kohli who hit the winning runs in the semi-final, smashing a four to finish on a personal total of 96 at Edgbaston in Birmingham. His boundary hit topped India out at 265, 50 runs more than Pakistan managed against England.
Of course, Pakistan can still count on quality delivery from bowler Hasan Ali. He is the leading wicket-taker in the tournament with 10 to his credit, per David Hopps of ESPNcricinfo.
Ali and Imad Wasim have both posted respectable bowling economy rates, per the tournament’s official website. Wasim has allowed only 135 runs in 30.1 overs from four innings.
Given the strength in depth of India’s batting order, Pakistan will likely need to rely heavily on Wasim and Ali to slow things down and take some prime wickets early on.