Dubai (UAE) | Jagran Sports Desk: Ahead of his side's much anticipated game against Pakistan at the ICC T20I World Cup 2021 in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Indian skipper Virat Kohli on Saturday said that "unnecessary outside stuff" on Indo-Pak rivalry does not matter much and it is a "very situational thing".

Speaking at the pre-match press conference, Kohli said that his side is in a situation where they are in charge of what of what they need to do. He also said that "atmosphere inside the stadium is different", but his side's mindset and preparations are no different.

"In games likes these, some unnecessary stuff happens on the professional point from outside that. It's fine as long as it stays outside our controlled environment, we just focus on what we need to do as cricketers and hence it's no different from other games of cricket that we play," Kohli said.

Kohli also spoke about Hardik Pandya and hinted that he will feature in the playing XI even if he can't bowl at the T20I World Cup as his replacement "can't be created overnight".

Pandya underwent a lower back surgery in 2019 and since then has bowled occasionally, raising questions if he can be played as a pure batter in the premier event.

"Honesty, I feel, Hardik presently with his physical condition is getting better in terms of being able to bowl two overs for us at a certain stage in this tournament," Kohli said.

However, the 32-year-old did not divulge much about the playing XI, but said that his team members are aware of their respective roles.

"We have spoken about our combinations but I am not going to reveal it right now but we have put in place a very balanced team that we feel covers all bases properly," he said.

"We are pretty confident in terms of execution as well. Guys have been playing a lot of T20 cricket in the IPL and everyone is playing well and that's a positive thing for the team," he noted.

"Now it's purely about execution out there in the middle which everyone is confident to do so. Role clarity is something that we have addressed already. We feel we are well prepared," he added.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma