Curtain-Raiser Asia Cup
Venue- Dubai International Stadium
Timings: Starts at 7.30 pm IST
Channel: Disney Hotstar
UAE, WHERE FOES PLAY THE BEST CRICKET!
The Afghans marched all over the Srilankans yesterday. The latter had lost home advantage due to political turbulences and paid its price. Sad, the match was marred by poor umpiring on and off the field.
The two warring armies sat back to watch the proceedings of the first match. The reference here is to India and Pakistan, as they noted how the pitch would play on Sunday. It was a helpful exercise because the Afghans taught how to play and the Islanders how not to play!
The Indo- Pak clashes are the aura created by the spectators outside the field. So naturally, the players feel the extra heat, but it’s not the mountain it is made to be. Perhaps, not a molehill, but not a mountain.
Jasprit Bumrah VS Shaheen Afridi!
The battle not to be! The Indian players walked up to the young Speedster and enquired about his health—comrades off the field.
Virat VS Babar!
The affection runs deep between them. Babar has been the self-appointed Ambassador for Virat, with the latter’s game losing its sheen. If Virat Kohli plays today, he would equal a record. He would be the second player to have played 100 matches in all three game formats! Will India honor him with an appearance?
The enigmatic Dinesh Karthik:
DK, as he is popularly known, has dug deep in his claws. However, he is no Push-Over, and he would be expected to play despite Rishab Pant being there with the gloves.
India’s Bowling Woes!
Two experienced campaigners in Bumrah and Shami are not there. The Bench looks strong when there; without them, a bit weaker. So, what would the Indian bowling squad look like?
The pitch is suitable for both medium pacers and spinners.
Here is the probable XI.
India (probable): 1 KL Rahul 2 Rohit Sharma (cap), 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Suryakumar Yadav, 5 Hardik Pandya, 6 Rishabh Pant/Dinesh Karthik (wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 9 R Ashwin/Avesh Khan, 10 Yuzvendra Chahal, 11 Arshdeep Singh
Only Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Yuzvendra Chahal can be counted as sure bets in the bowling department. Arshdeep Singh deserves a spot in the World Cup as the lone left-arm fast in the running. Avesh Khan and R. Ashwin are the most likely candidates for the final place.
Pakistan (probable): 1 Babar Azam (cap), 2 Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 3 Fakhar Zaman, 4 Asif Ali, 5 Iftikhar Ahmed, 6 Khushdil Shah, 7 Shadab Khan, 8 Mohammad Nawaz/Usman Qadir, 9 Shahnawaz Dahani/Mohammad Hasnain, 10 Haris Rauf, 11 Naseem Shah
There is little room for discussion among Pakistan’s top seven batting prospects, with the only open spots among the bowlers. Considering Shadab Khan’s position as vice-captain, I think it’s improbable that they’ll pick two wrist spinners, giving Usman Qadir a slight edge over Mohammad Nawaz. However, given the rapid speed provided by Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah, they might prefer Shahnawaz Dahani’s leadership to that of Mohammad Hasnain.
• Team winning the toss would have a 10 % edge over the other if they opt to field first.
• If the team batting first manages 50 runs in the first six overs, they can make 180 plus by the 20th, thus taking the toss advantage.
May the best team win!