Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed is not taking the Indian team lightly despite the absence of Virat Kohli. India, who are the defending Asia Cup champions, will take on Pakistan in their second match of the Asia Cup on September 19 in Dubai.

Kohli has been rested following the tour of England owing to his problematic back injury. However, the Pakistan skipper does not consider the Indian team any less of a challenge.

"No doubt he (Kohli) is their captain and a world-class batsman but I think they (India) have a good team even without Kohli," Sarfraz told media persons on Monday. 

'I don't think it will make much of a difference'

Virat Kohli
File photo of India captain Virat Kohli.IAN KINGTON/AFP/Getty Images

"They have good players who have done well for India. So I don't think it will make much difference to India. Their batting is very strong so I can say that it will be a good match," he further added. 

The last time these two sides met was back in the Champions Trophy finals, where Pakistan convincingly beat India at the Oval. Although many people feel Pakistan are the favourites to win the Asia Cup owing to the familiarity with conditions, Sarfraz does not want to think too far ahead.

"We will not take that Champions Trophy win in our minds," Sarfraz said.

"That was a different atmosphere (in London) and conditions. It was a year ago so that's history so we will enter the ground with a new strategy and passion," he added.

Former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly too believes that the absence of Kohli will not be a big factor and that India start as favourites.

However, Rohit Sharma says that his team will take the match as just another match and wants his side to focus on one match at a time. India go into the tournament with few questions to answer and the captain wants players to stand up and nail their spots at the number 4 and 6 positions.

History does favour the Indian side, as they are the most successful side in the tournament after having won six titles while Pakistan has managed to win the trophy only a couple of times.