The Asia Cup 2023 got off to a rollicking start with Pakistan decimating Nepal in the opening encounter and Sri Lanka making short work of Bangladesh. However, the big-ticket match between India and Pakistan is what all cricket fans are waiting for.
Almost after a year, the two sides played an epic match in the T20 World Cup 2022 in Melbourne, India and Pakistan will clash in the Group A encounter of the Asia Cup 2023 which will be played on September 2nd in Pallekele, Kandy.
The recent match between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh at the same venue showed the nature of the pitch and the huge boundaries and expect something similar in the India-Pakistan match as well. Therefore, picking the right combination would be of utmost importance for both sides.
Here is the COC predicted Team India playing XI for the Pakistan match:
The BCCI selection panel threw in some surprises when they announced the 17-member Team India squad for the Asia Cup and later coach Rahul Dravid revealed that KL Rahul will not be playing in the first two encounters due to a niggle.
The top order of the Indian XI is expected to remain the same with Shubman Gill opening with captain Rohit Sharma. They might want to go with Ishan Kishan at the top as well for the left-right combination, but that would mean a lot of adjustments in the rest of the batting order.
Virat Kohli and a fit again Shreyas Iyer will be at no.3 and 4 and Kishan might have to bat at no.5 spot being the wicketkeeper as well.
The two all-rounders Hardik Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja will have a huge responsibility on their shoulders to assist the bowling lineup. There will be a consideration between going with an extra all-rounder in Shardul Thakur or Akshar Patel to lengthen the batting.
Kuldeep Yadav is expected to partner Jadeja in the spin department.
The pace unit of the Indian team will be in full force with the trio of Mohammad Shami, Mohammed Siraj, and Jasprit Bumrah getting back together.
The Pakistani batters would be wary of the Indian pace attack, even on the slow and sluggish Kandy pitch.
COC Predicted Team India playing XI:
Rohit Sharma (C), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (WK), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammad Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj