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Pakistan aim for final shock against Kohli and co

Pakistan aim for final shock against Kohli and co


The scene is set for a titanic tussle as Pakistan and India go head-to-head for the first time in a major tournament final.

The last seven meetings between the two sides in tournament cricket have all gone the way of India, who are the current holders of the ICC Champions Trophy and who thrashed Pakistan by 124 runs in the group stages of the current competition.

Not surprisingly India find themselves heavy favourites to triumph at The Oval on Sunday, so 33/20 for Pakistan to win may look a little more tempting if you want to make a healthy return.

Top-order batting provides the powerhouse of the Indian side, with Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma and captain Virat Kohli three of the top five runscorers in the competition to date.

Kohli has passed fifty three times in four innings, but has yet to reach three figures and will relish the opportunity to do so on the biggest stage of all.

So 13/5 for him to be top team batsman for India is certainly a worthwhile option, backed up with both Dhawan and Sharma available at 3/1.

Pakistan’s batting is a little more unpredictable, but they have delivered under pressure against both Sri Lanka and hosts England, with newcomer Fakhar Zaman looking a natural on the international stage.

The left-hander passed 50 in each of the last two games and, with the opposition not having much of a dossier on Fakhar to turn to, 4/1 to be top team batsman for Pakistan appears worthy of consideration.

On the bowling front, rather than spinners it is likely to be the paceman who could make all the difference.

For India both Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah have impressed, while Pakistan have plenty of options, even if Mohammad Amir misses out through injury.

Hasan Ali is the leading wicket-taker in the competition with ten, having claimed three wickets apiece in each of the last three games – after taking 1-70 in the thrashing by India.

The consistent right-armer is 3/1 to be leading team bowler in the final on Sunday, with left-armer Junaid Khan at 7/2 also one to consider.

One final factor in the game could be the issue of Pakistan not having played at The Oval during the tournament so far, while India claimed an emphatic eight-wicket win over South Africa in south London last week.

That could prove decisive as the Pakistan paceman will have to adjust their approaches from those taken on the slower, dusty surfaces in Cardiff and at Edgbaston.

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Gareth Freeman Gareth is our daily tipster, who has years of successful sports betting behind him and is always on hand to offer a value bet. As well as a passion for Football (UK and European), he also has in-depth Tennis, Boxing, Snooker and Basketball knowledge.