Asia Cup: Clash of old foes Pakistan and India
Pakistan and India have an ongoing rivalry which means that whenever these two arch rivals meet there is a sense of anticipation that an enthralling contest is in store for the fans and this time won’t be any different.
The Indo-Pak rivalry resumes once again but this time in Bangladesh where they will compete in the Asia Cup match. India who are clearly the favourites to win the title this year are also rooting for a win in this all important clash against Pakistan. Former fast bowling great Wasim Akram has also backed the Indian side to win this contest but it’s difficult to pick side in this high profile clash because this match brings out the best from both side.
Indian team won the match last time these two sides met in the World Cup of 2015 and that too in comprehensive fashion so they would look to repeat that performance on Saturday as well but things are different this time around as the conditions and format is different.
This match is extremely intense in nature and at the end of the day the team which handles the pressure in a better manner because, apart from putting a good display in all departments of the game, the team which controls its emotions and manages to stay calm in crunch situations usually wins.
Afridi holds the key for Pakistan
Pakistan will rely on their captain Shahid Afridi to lead them from the front because he is one of the senior pro in the side with loads of experience as compared to some of the other players in the squad. Players like Hafeez and Malik will have to step it up a notch because they will have to carry the batting side of Pakistan which is relatively inexperienced right now. This match presents a chance for some of the younger players like Nawaz, Manzoor and Sharjeel Khan impress the selectors and the nation in general because most of the country is glued to their television sets during this match. Pakistan have a decent bowling outfit but they will have to bowl really well against a pretty strong Indian batting powerhouse.
The Indian perspective
On the other hand the Indian side which will be led by MS Dhoni will be confident going into this match because they are consistent in the T20 format these days and they managed to defeat Bangladesh in the first match so they had the chance of gauging the conditions before this important clash. Dhoni would look to prove his critics wrong by winning this match as he is under considerate amount of pressure to retire. With Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli and others in good nick, team India would look towards them to provide a solid batting show. Although bowling is not their forte, Aswin will hold the cards for Indias the conditions will suit his style of bowling.
Judging from the first couple of match at Sher e Bangla stadium, it seems as if the pitches will not produce high scoring encounters and a score around 150 looks a challenging one for the side batting second.
Pakistan: Shahid Afridi (Captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Anwar Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Khurram Manzoor, Wahab Riaz, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Irfan, Mohammad Amir, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Nawaz, Sarfraz Ahmed, Umar Akmal, Mohammad Sami and Sharjeel Khan
India: MS Dhoni (Captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Ravindra Jadeja, Hardik Pandya, Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Ashish Nehra, Suresh Raina, Ajinkya Rahane, Harbhajan Singh, Pawan Negi, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Parthiv Patel