London: India and Pakistan believe they can thrive as underdogs at the women's World Twenty20 where all the pressure will be on hosts, and 50-over World Cup winners, England.
India were third in March's World Cup while Pakistan were sixth, but both Asian sides harbour hopes of making the semi-finals of the Twenty20 which, along with the final, will be played alongside the men's closing stages.
This is the inaugural women's T20 with all the teams still relatively new to the format - India have played only two while New Zealand with 12 have the most experience.
India warmed-up for the tournament by taking on boys teams in Bangalore.
"We have one of the best bowling attacks. Gouher Sultana has been bowling well in her first few series and Priyanka Roy was our highest wicket-taker in the World Cup," India coach Sudha Shah told a website.
India skipper Jhulan Goswami dismissed fears that Australia and New Zealand may have an advantage with their big hitters.
"They are taller and fitter than us", Goswami said. "But power is not everything, you need to play with your mind. If you're mentally strong you can beat them and we are confident about ourselves."
Under-rated Pakistan, who were sixth at the World Cup, are also looking to their spinners to cause an upset. "Our strength lies in our spin attack," said captain Sana Mir.
"We are planning to make full use of our plus point and do well in this tournament. I believe we are among the favourites."
The first round of the tournament will be played at Taunton, the home of English county Somerset, with South Africa against West Indies and England facing India on Thursday's opening day.
England skipper Charlotte Edwards insists her team can cope with the pressure of playing at home. "I'd rather be in our position than not to be honest," she said. "It's new territory for us, but we're not feeling the pressure from it at all."
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