Leading upto the much anticipated India versus Pakistan clash in the Asia Cup 2018, former captain Sourav Ganguly has said that even though the Men in Blue are missing their best batsman Virat Kohli, they still start off as favourites, according to him, against their arch-rivals on September 19.
There have been widespread talks that in Kohli's absence, India isn't as strong as it would be with him batting in the top order and that Pakistan's pace battery, where they have included four left-arm fast bowlers in the squad, could prove to be too good for India's batting line-up but Sourav doesn't think along those lines.
He still believes that the likes of Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul MS Dhoni, Kuldeep Yadav, Hardik Pandya and Jasprit Bumrah & co is one of the toughest limited-overs outfits for any team to come across.
"It will be a 50-50 contest in Dubai," said Ganguly at an event he was present for and added, "Virat Kohli's absence won't be a factor, they are a better side."
Though Pakistan has a better win-loss record over India, it is the latter that has dominated the rivalry in World Cups and even in the Asia Cup.
India opens up their campaign with a game against Hong Kong on September 19 before facing off Pakistan a day later.
(Inputs from PTI)