Shreyas Iyer and Ishan Kishan, India’s top two T20I run scorers this year, have been left out of the Indian squad for the Asia Cup. Virat Kohli and KL Rahul will make their tournament debuts for India.
Suryakumar Yadav has scored 428 runs in 12 matches this year at a strike rate of 189.38, and his dazzling form may pose a problem for Pakistani bowlers.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar has taken the most wickets for the Indian team this year in T20Is, with 20 in 16 innings at an impressive economy of 6.84.
However, the injury to Harshal Patel and Jasprit Bumrah will make it difficult to compensate for the likes of Arshdeep Singh and Avesh Khan.
Mohammad Rizwan, Pakistan’s wicket-keeper batter, has been in outstanding form this year in T201s, scoring 1.349 runs in 27 innings with a tonne and 12 half-centuries, striking at 134.63 and averaging 71.00.
Babar Azam has also scored 1,005 runs in 27 innings, with a best of 122. Fakhar Zaman has also been in good form recently, and Pakistan’s batting lineup could very well take on the Indian bowling attack.
Despite the absence of ace pacer Shaheen Afridi from the tournament, Pakistan’s bowling looks balanced enough. Haris Rauf has 26 wickets in 22 T20I innings this year, while Hasan Ali, who has 25 wickets this year, has not been named to the squad.
All-rounder Shadab Khan has also picked up 20 scalps this year in T20Is.
Dream 11 picks
First, let us inform you about the squads of both teams…
Rohit Sharma (C), Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Hardik Pandya, Deepak Hooda, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, KL Rahul, Rishabh Pant, Dinesh Karthik, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Arshdeep Singh, Ravi Bishnoi, Avesh Khan, Yuzvendra Chahal.
Babar Azam (C), Fakhar Zaman, Haider All, Khushdil Shah, Asif Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Mohammad Rizwan, Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, Shahnawaz Dahani, Usman Qadir, Mohammad Hasnain.
Here is the dream 11 team we would go with!
WK: Mohammad Rizwan, Rishabh Pant
Batsmen: Babar Azam, Rohit Sharma, Suryakumar Yadav, KL Rahul
All-rounders: Hardik Pandya, Shadab Khan
Bowlers: Yuzvendra Chahal, Haris Rauf, Bhuvneshwar Kumar
This year, the Men in Blue have been in good form in T20Is. They have already defeated the West Indies, Sri Lanka, Ireland, and England. India has also given many opportunities to newcomers such as Avesh Khan, Ishan Kishan, and Deepak Hooda.
Hardik Pandya, Rishabh Pant, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar are among the senior players in good form. It’s all about consistency and delivering the knockout punch now.
Meanwhile, Pakistan will be without talismanic pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi. He is unable to compete in the Asia Cup due to a knee injury.
Pakistan’s batting is strong, led by skipper Azam and wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan. The middle order is a little less experienced, and Asif Ali will have to play a key role in this game.
So, considering all factors, India will walk into this as favourites!
But its India- Pakistan, so you never know how the pressure might have an effect. The one who handles it better, will probably be the one winning this match!