Shoaib Akhtar expresses his wish to see India-Pakistan final in Asia Cup and World Cup

Akhtar wants the Asia Cup 2023 to be played in Sri Lanka if not in Pakistan.

Asia Cup 2023 is due to be held in September | GettyFormer Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar wants to see the face-off between India and Pakistan in the finals of the Asia Cup and ODI World Cup later this year.

Pakistan have the hosting rights of the Asia Cup 2023, scheduled to be held in September. However, BCCI secretary Jay Shah has time and again reiterated that India will not travel and the multi-nation tournament would be shifted to a neutral venue.

On the other hand, the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 is slated to take place in India in October-November.

Akhtar, who is currently taking part in the Legends League Cricket, also wants the Asia Cup to be played in Sri Lanka if not in Pakistan.

"I want Asia Cup 2023 to be held in Pakistan, if not Pakistan then Sri Lanka. I want to see India and Pakistan play the final in the Asia Cup and World Cup. Nothing else should happen in world cricket, just India and Pakistan finals," Shoaib Akhtar told ANI.

During the just-concluded Border-Gavaskar Trophy against Australia, Virat Kohli broke a 1205-day drought without a Test century as he hit a superb 186 in the drawn final match of the series in Ahmedabad.

Overall, Kohli now has 75 international centuries to his name and only the legendary Sachin Tendulkar is ahead of him with 100 international hundreds.

With the burden of captaincy removed from his shoulders, Akhtar expects Kohli to score runs like a "beast" and cross the 100-century mark.

"Virat Kohli had to get back in form so it's nothing new for me. The pressure of captaincy was on him, finally, he is now mentally free. Now he will play with so much focus. I have complete faith in him that he will score 110-century and break the record of Sachin Tendulkar's 100 international tons. Now He doesn't have a load of captaincy and will score runs like a beast," he stated.

Fondly known as the "Rawalpindi Express", Shoaib Akhtar also said that Sachin Tendulkar was his most prized scalp during his international career.

"I remember once I told my teammate that I will take the wicket of Sachin. At that time we were playing in Kolkata. On the very first ball, I bagged the wicket of Sachin Tendulkar in front of a one lakh crowd. I still remember half of the ground went empty after Sachin returned," he remarked.

(With ANI Inputs)


By Salman Anjum - 16 Mar, 2023

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