MIRPUR, Bangladesh (Staff Report) – India thrashed Pakistan by wickets in the Asia Cup Twenty20 match, played at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in the Bangladesh capital Dhaka on Saturday (today).
India won the toss and opted to bowl first against bitter rival Pakistan.
Pakistani team’s performance was very poor as it secured only 83 runs in 17.3 overs, giving India 84 run target to win.
Shahid Afridi managed to score only two runs before he was run out.
The batting line up fell like pins with only Sarfaraz Ahmed and Khurram Manzoor managing to score in double figures, 25 and 10 respectively.
Hardik Pandya bagged three wickets and Ravindra Jadeja got two wickets.
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Both the cricketing nations will face each other at least twice in a T20 between February and April.
They take on each other in the first stage of the Asia Cup and will also clash in the group stage in the World T20 2016.
India and Sri Lanka have won the Asia Cup for the highest number of times. Both the teams have lifted the trophy five times while Pakistan have won it two times.
India played seven T20 matches in Mirpur and lost one and that was ICC T20 World Cup 2014 final against Sri Lanka, whereas, Pakistan played six matches at the same venue and only won thrice. 3 of 6 matches they have played were against Bangladesh. They won two of them.
Intikhab Alam, Manager Pakistan team, conceded that India have the best batting line-up in the world but rated the bowling weak. However, he said that was what Pakistan would look to exploit when the sub-continental giants clash on Saturday.
Former Test Cricketer Abdul Qadir urged the Pakistan cricket team to take their encounter of the Asia Cup against India as a practice match saying the green-shirts instead should focus on World Twenty20 clash in India next month so as to break the jinx against the rivals.
Pakistani players are all geared-up after the Pakistan Super League (PSL) and are pumped up for the upcoming clash against India, All-rounder Shoaib Malik has said.
Pakistan’s 15-man squad:
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, Sharjeel Khan.
India’s 15-man squad:
MS Dhoni (Captain), Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Yuvraj Singh, Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravichandran Ashwin, Suresh Raina, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Harbhajan Singh, Ashish Nehra, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Pawan Negi.
Asia Cup Schedule:
Feb 24: India vs Bangladesh
Feb 25: Sri Lanka vs TBD
Feb 26: Bangladesh vs TBD
Feb 27: India vs Pakistan
Feb 28: Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka
Feb 29: Pakistan vs TBD
Mar 1: India vs Sri Lanka
Mar 2: Bangladesh vs Pakistan
Mar 3: India vs TBD
Mar 4: Pakistan vs Sri Lanka
Mar 6: Final.