Misbah-ul-Haq says while every match in the Champions Trophy is important, Pakistan's group B clash against India in Birmingham on June 15 will be the most crucial one. South Africa and the West Indies are the other teams in the pool.
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The 39-year-old Pakistan captain has featured in several matches against India and therefore, is aware of the expectations from fans of both sides. "Obviously playing against India is very important because of the interest back in India and Pakistan. So, it's really important to play well and just win." Pakistan have defeated India twice in the previous editions of the Champions Trophy. Also read: Saeed Ajmal excited about India-Pakistan clash
Misbah, a right-handed middle-order batsman, however also mentioned that his team will be focusing on the first two matches as it would decide Pakistan's fate in the tournament. "Coming into this tournament, I think the first two matches are more important for us because you can't leave it till the last game (to make the semifinals)," he said. Read: Vigilance officer for Pakistan in Champions Trophy
Pakistan kick-start their campaign against the West Indies on May 7 followed by a match against South Africa on May 10. Asked about how he plans to combat tough teams in his group, Misbah said playing the warm-up matches would be the key. "Coming from Pakistan, it's really difficult to adjust to the conditions. Playing games in Scotland and Ireland will help." The five Pakistani players to watch out for