On Sunday, the cricket world’s attention will be drawn to Dubai International Cricket Stadium, where Asian powers and enemies India and Pakistan will rekindle their rivalry in the second match of the Asia Cup 2022: IND vs PAK
India is yet to recover from last year’s humiliating setback at the hands of Pakistan. The images from that game still haunt many Indian supporters, but Rohit Sharma and his team will be eager to play Pakistan and turn the tables.
However, after its early exit from the World Cup, India has improved its form, with the squad being unbeaten in seven bilateral series. This run included victories over New Zealand, the West Indies (twice), Sri Lanka, Ireland, and England, as well as a tie with South Africa. India’s remarkable run, combined with their number one rating in T20Is, has propelled them to the top of the Asia Cup standings this year.
Pakistan advanced to the World Cup semifinals, but they were eliminated following a loss to Australia. Given the Asia Cup and the impending T20 World Cup, Pakistan would have like to play more T20 cricket, but the country’s international schedule has been devoid of T20 matches. Pakistan has only played two bilateral series and one T20 game since their World Cup campaign last year. Both series, against Bangladesh and the West Indies, were won by Pakistan by 3-0 scores. The one-off match against Australia was easily won by the reigning World Champions.
Asia Cup 2022: IND vs PAK, Team Details
PAK PLAYERS: Babar Azam (C), Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Khushdil Shah, Asif Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Naseem Shah, Shahnawaz Dahani, Usman Qadir, Mohammad Hasnain, Usman Qadir, Mohammad Hasnain
Babar is the world’s top-ranked T20I batsman and can currently do no wrong in white-ball cricket. Last year, the 27-year-old, along with Mohammad Rizwan, was the main architect of Pakistan’s maiden victory over India in the ICC T20 World Cup. Babar averages 45.52 in T20Is, and when he gets going, even the best bowlers in the world can’t get him out of the middle. Needless to say, Babar will be crucial to Pakistan’s success in this high-profile match.
IND XI: 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, Yuzvendra Chahal
Kohli, on the other hand, will be eager to put his bad form behind him. Kohli’s last international century was nearly a thousand days ago. Following India’s defeat from the T20 World Cup, Kohli stepped down as T20 captain and was replaced as India’s leader in the two other forms by Rohit Sharma. However, removing Kohli as captain has not helped the matter, as the 33-year-old continues to struggle with consistency. However, prior of the Asia Cup, a video of Kohli’s net session went viral on Twitter, with Kohli striking the ball as cleanly as he has ever done! That video would have instilled confidence in Indian fans, who will be hoping that Kohli can replicate it against Pakistan on Sunday.