Asia Cup 2023 is all set to witness the biggest spectacle of the tournament between India and Pakistan on Saturday. The two teams lock horns against each other in ODIs for the first time since India’s dominating win in the 2019 World Cup. There have been four more occasions of the face-offs, all coming in T20Is, and Pakistan have seemed to have narrowed the gap between the two sides.
Babar Azam’s men are the No.1 ODI side in the world and are coming on the back of a clean-sweep win over Afghanistan and a cakewalk win over Nepal in the Asia Cup. Meanwhile, the Rohit Sharma-led brigade managed a 2-1 win over West Indies in their last ODI assignment. The Cricket world now waits in anticipation as the two giants will meet each other in a Group A clash at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium. However ahead of the clash, Pakistan’s Shoaib Akhtar has made some bold statements.
“Babar and his team are very mature. They have played high-pressure games against India before. They won’t be under much pressure now. If Pakistan win the toss and bat first, they will literally hammer India. Vice-versa, if India win the toss, Pakistan could be in trouble because ball isn’t really moving much under the lights,” Akhtar said on his YouTube channel.
“Both teams have a good chance. Bumrah, Shami, and Siraj should be playing together. Kuldeep should play. There’s a debate on Virat Kohli on whether he should bat at 3 or 4, and whether Ishan should bat at 5 or open the innings. But what I must say is that Pakistan is a formidable side. They have the ammunition with the ball, and their batting is settled. It isn’t a volatile batting order anymore, like in the past. These are the two balanced sides when they play in the sub-continent,” said Akhtar.
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