India not taking ‘dangerous’ Afghanistan lightly in Super 8: Rahul Dravid

Written by Praveen CA

India are set to play their first Super 8 match against Afghanistan on Thursday, 20 June. This is the first time in the T20 World Cup 2024 that India will be playing outside of New York. India won three out of their three matches in New York’s Nassau County International Stadium and their last group-stage match in Florida was washed out due to rain. India will face Rashid Khan’s Afghanistan, who are most comfortable in the T20 format of the game.

While the Afghan Atalans have not beaten India in any T20Is yet, the Indian head coach is still wary of the side. Speaking at the pre-match press conference ahead of the game, Dravid said that Afghanistan have recognised stars in their team who spend a lot of time in the Indian Premier League. Dravid added that Afghanistan deserved to be respected and India would not be making the mistake of taking them lightly in the world tournament.

“Firstly, it was good to play in New York. All the three games that we played were really well-attended. It’s also lovely to come to the Caribbean. Come and play on this ground, which has a great history. It’s fantastic, we are really looking forward to it. We have had a couple of days of really good practice,” Dravid said at the pre-match press conference in Barbados.

India had a good rested during the gap between the group stage and Super 8. Dravid said that the team was well rested and ready for a good game against the ‘dangerous’ Afghanistan.

“And we feel, we are ready and rested. We feel we are prepared. Afghanistan are a dangerous team in this format. They have shown with their performances in this World Cup. They might not have a lot of international experience, but some of their players play regularly in T20 leagues, in fact, more than some of our players do. They are well-travelled cricketers, especially in the T20 circuit. A lot of them are very prominent members in their IPL teams and other teams,” Dravid said about Afghanistan.

“Certainly, in this format, they are not a team that should be taken lightly and they are deservedly in the Super 8s. We will not treat them any differently as we would treat any other team we expect to play in the Super 8s,” he further added.

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Praveen CA