Former West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle picked Team India as the favourites ahead of their T20 World Cup 2024 clash against Pakistan.

Rohit Sharma-led India made a solid start to their T20 World Cup 2024 campaign with a win against Ireland, whereas Pakistan lost their opener against the debutants USA.

“Their (Pakistan) backs are up against the wall and coming off a loss like that straight into playing a team like India, who traditionally have the upper hand in these games, is a huge challenge,” Gayle told ICC.

But Gayle said it would be naive to expect a cold contest between the cross-border rivals. “India are in the driver`s seat, definitely a more relaxed seat. But this is India versus Pakistan at a World Cup, so you can take nothing for granted,” he added.

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Ahead of the biggest game of T20 World Cup 2024, Gaykes said Pakistan have to regroup to take on India. “As for Pakistan, they have no time to waste. They have to re-group for the biggest game of the tournament against India in New York City that`s just got even bigger,” he said.

However, Gayle feels USA beating Pakistan in the T20 World Cup 2024 would take the game of cricket forward. “Like the rest of the cricketing world, I was gripped by the USA`s victory over Pakistan. It is a huge result which is not only incredible for them but massive for cricket as a whole.

“You always expect a few upsets at World Cups and having started well by beating Canada, USA put Pakistan under the pump for pretty much the whole game. I think it marks the day the World Cup really started,” he noted. 

While speaking about his country, Chris Gayle said the T20 World Cup 2024 means a lot as they failed to qualify for the ODI World Cup 2023 which was held last year in India.

“Having not qualified for the last ICC Men`s Cricket World Cup, this tournament is so important for cricket in the Caribbean. This is a huge thing for the players to step up and be counted,” he added.

(With PTI Inputs)

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