Indian skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss and decided to bat first in the mutch-anticipated match of the Asia Cup 2023 on Saturday, played at Pallekele Cricket Stadium, Kandy.
Despite fears that rain may disrupt the game, the match promises to be a thrilling battle between the Pakistani pacers and Indian batters.
After the toss, Indian Captain Rohit Sharma said: “There is a bit of weather around but we cannot think about it too much.”
“Embrace the challenge, embrace the situation. We had a six-day camp in Bangalore where we worked on our skills,” Sharma said.
“The Asia Cup is a quality tournament with quality teams. At the end of the day, we need to think about what we can do here.
“Since the last ODI series we played in the West Indies, we have got a few additions: Shreyas and Bumrah are back. Shardul is there. Hardik, of course. And Shardul is there. And two spinners in Kuldeep and Jadeja.”
Babar, on the other hand, said: “To be honest, we also wanted to bat first.”
“We have played a lot of cricket here in the last one and a half month, so we know the conditions,” he added.
It is pertinent to mention that Babar Azam might walk away from this game with another feather in his cap. He needs one more 100 to become the national side player with the most hundreds.
It must be noted that this is India’s first match in the tournament.
Meanwhile, Pakistan began their Asia Cup 2023 campaign on a high with a massive 238-run win over Nepal on Wednesday.
India have the upper hand against Pakistan with seven wins in 13 Asia Cup (ODI) matches. Meanwhile, Pakistan have won five with one match ending in no result.
Pakistan have also lost four of the last five matches against India in the Asia Cup, with their last win coming in Mirpur in 2014.
Pakistan: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice captain) Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Salman Ali Agha, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf
India: Rohit Sharma (capt), Shubman Gill, Ishan Kishan (wk), Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Jasprit Bumrah.