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Rohit Sharma ‘would love to’ play Pakistan outside ICC tournaments

Rohit Sharma on playing v Pakistan
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Rohit Sharma has said that he would “love to” play against Pakistan more regularly, outside of only multi-nation tournaments.

India and Pakistan last played bilateral cricket in late 2012-early 2013. Since then, political tensions between the two countries have meant that they only play against each other in multi-nation tournaments like World Cups, Champions Trophies, and Asia Cups.

Over the years, talks of resuming bilateral cricket between the two nations have been initiated several times. Various countries have offered to play neutral hosts for India vs Pakistan cricket, but nothing has materialised as of yet.

Rohit, speaking on the topic at the Club Prairie Fire podcast hosted by Adam Gilchrist and Michael Vaughan, said that he would love to play regularly against Pakistan. On being asked whether India and Pakistan playing Test cricket would be beneficial for the health of the game, Rohit gave an affirmative response: “I totally believe that.”

The last time these two teams played Test cricket was way back in 2007, when Pakistan toured India for a bilateral series. India won the three-match Test series 1-0 following a 3-2 victory in the ODIs.

Elaborating on Pakistan’s quality as a Test side, Rohit said that their exciting bowling line up would make for a good contest, especially in overseas conditions. “They’re a good team,” he said. “They have got a superb bowling line-up. So it’ll be a good contest especially if you play overseas conditions. That’ll be awesome.”

Rohit said that “he would love to” play Pakistan regularly outside ICC tournaments as India’s captain, becoming the first big-name Indian player to voice an opinion on this matter.

“At the end of the day, we want to be in contest and I think it will be a great contest between the two sides. We anyway play them in ICC trophies, so it doesn’t really matter. It’s just pure cricket that I’m looking at. I’m not interested in anything else. It’s pure cricket, game between bat and ball. It’ll be a great contest.”

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