Dubai: Pakistan’s Babar Azam won the toss and opted to bowl against India. At the toss, Kohli admitted that he too wanted to bowl first. Kohli said India need to stay focused and as players should stay disconnected from all that is happening around the match. Hoping that the pitch yields runs, Kohli also spoke of the pitch which as per him looks different.

“The pitch looks very different. Evenly rolled and there is no grass at all which was the case during the IPL, and I’m sure that was done to hold it together well for the World Cup. We expect the pitch to stay good all through and set a good total,” Kohli said at the toss.

India – who are hot title contenders – would start hot favourites against arch-rivals Pakistan. The Kohli-led side is in top form, coming off two convincing wins in the warm-up games against England and then Australia. India looks like a well-oiled machine and their enviable record against Pakistan makes them frontrunners to win the match.

Babar Azam: We are going to bowl first. We’ll look to take early wickets and put pressure. Dew is also a factor. We have had good practice sessions and am confident about our preparations. Pakistan’s bowlers are known to trouble other teams but I am confident about our batting too. Haider Ali is left out.

India (Playing XI): Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, Virat Kohli(c), Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant(w), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Mohammed Shami, Varun Chakaravarthy, Jasprit Bumrah

Pakistan (Playing XI): Babar Azam(c), Mohammad Rizwan(w), Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Haris Rauf, Shaheen Afridi