India’s Predicted XI In High-Stakes Asia Cup Game Against Pakistan

India will be taking on Pakistan in their Asia Cup 2023 camaign opener on Saturday. This will be the first time that the two sides will be facing each other since their meeting in T20 World Cup last year. For the first time in several months, the Rohit Sharma-led side is having a full-strength team. The Indian team finished a camp on the outskirts of Bengaluru in Alur to prepare themselves ahead of the match against Pakistan. On the other hand, the Babar Azam-led side routed Nepal by 238 runs in the opening game of the continental event.

The likes of Shreyas Iyer and Jasprit Bumrah have returned to the Indian setup while KL Rahul is set to miss first two games of Asia Cup.

India (probable): 1 Rohit Sharma (capt), 2 Shubman Gill, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Shreyas Iyer, 5 Ishan Kishan (wk), 6 Hardik Pandya, 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 Shardul Thakur/Mohammed Shami, 9 Kuldeep Yadav, 10 Mohammed Siraj, 11 Jasprit Bumrah
Pakistan announced an unchanged XI on Friday evening.
Pakistan: 1 Fakhar Zaman, 2 Imam-ul-Haq, 3 Babar Azam (capt), 4 Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 5 Agha Salman, 6 Iftikhar Ahmed, 7 Shadab Khan, 8 Mohammad Nawaz, 9 Shaheen Shah Afridi, 10 Naseem Shah, 11 Haris Rauf

Pitch and conditions: Rain threatens delayed start

The match will be played on a fresh pitch but if it behaves anything like the Sri Lanka-Bangladesh one, with help for both seamers and spinners, good luck to the batters. There’s a forecast of rain, though, from early morning till mid-afternoon, which could delay the start.

Stats and trivia: Kohli, Babar on the cusp of milestones

Quotes

“They are a very good team, last few years they’ve done really well, whether it’s at the T20 World Cup or in the 50-over format. No team becomes No. 1 just like that. Pakistan has worked hard a lot to get there, they look like a unit. It will be a good challenge to play against them.”
Rohit Sharma on Pakistan
“Let’s leave that debate [Babar vs Kohli] to people. Everybody has their point of view, and I don’t want to comment on it. He is elder to me and I have been taught to respect elders, no matter from which country they are. And I have learnt a lot from him. In 2019, during the World Cup, I spoke to him and it helped me a lot.”
Babar Azam on his relation with Virat Kohli
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