Bangladesh are a better side, Mortaza warns England

"It depends on how the pitch looks before the game".

The tournament favourites, team India has played well in the warm-up matches against Bangladesh and New Zea Land.

"Ben Stokes has had a little bowl today, and we will see how he pulls up tomorrow to see how much he will bowl - but I certainly see him bowling". "I think India have got one of the most potent attacks in the championship", Glenn McGrath insisted.

"They need to make a good start to the tournament, and it is a big game for them first up".

"The expectations of the countrymen of both countries will be really high but as far as Virat Kohli and his team are concerned, I'm sure his message to the team would be, go out, just keep aside all the distractions from outside and just look to focus on the target and the task at hand - and go out and express yourself, play your natural game", the 42-year-old said.

"I have not missed a single India-Pakistan contest since attending my first one in Mohali during the 2011 World Cup".

Bangladesh collapsed to 22 for six in 7.3 overs against India, not as bad as England on Monday, but concerning all the same.

The cricket-mad neighbouring countries rarely square off and hundreds of millions of fans are expected to tune in and watch the teams fight for national pride at Edgbaston in Birmingham.

India begin their title defence against Pakistan on June 4. "If we want to boycott cricket with Pakistan then there should not be any business ties, no other sport should be played, there must be complete shut down", he said.

Laxman praised the Indian batsmen for showing the temperament and skills in English conditions. Afridi feels recent history and the depth of India's squad are two factors that favor the defending champions against Sarfraz Ahmed's team. When asked about the importance of the tournament Laxman differed from his former teammate's comment.

"A game between Pakistan and India is always good and Birmingham has always had a very good atmosphere", said Azhar.

England prevailed too in Bangladesh a year ago, when they had to dig deep for a 2-1 series verdict, and Mashrafe is not about to proclaim his team's victory prospects this time.

Laxman also named his four semi-finalists of the tournament.

India have never lost a 50-over World Cup or Twenty20 showdown against Pakistan, and a win on Sunday would put them in good stead in a tough group also including Sri Lanka and South Africa.

  • Leroy Wright