Sri Lanka nearly defeated India in their previous Asia Cup 2023 match. The deliveries of Kuldeep Yadav brought India back into the game and compelled Shanaka to reflect on where the trouble began. Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah, and Shaheen Afridi are believed to have incurred injuries at R. Premadasa Stadium, which has a troubled history for Pakistan. It remains to be seen how both teams will ascend the standings to qualify for the championship.
Without a doubt, Sri Lanka has the ability to dominate in the Asia Cup. They have won the tournament six times: five times in the ODI format and once in the T20 format. In contrast, Pakistan has only won the tournament twice, in 2000 and 2012. In 2000, Sri Lanka was in contention for the championship before losing by 39 runs.
Two decades later, they met again in the final, but in the T20 format. Sri Lanka emerged victorious by 23 runs. The side is defending the title even though it is in a different form.
Two Sri Lankan batsmen are in excellent form as they face Pakistan in their own territory. Sadeera and Kusal, who have accumulated 167 and 162 runs, respectively, rank among the leading scorers. Babar Azam is at the top of the chart; however, the Pakistani captain also appears on the list of the highest runs scored. His journey since then has been disappointing.
Babar Azam, the right-handed batsman who is 28 years old, has a great deal of cricket left in him. The Asia Cup 2023 may not be the optimal competition for him. His batting average is 58.48, with 5,380 runs tallied in 104 innings. In the meantime, his best batting partner, Rizwan, is struggling to score well. He has participated in 58 ODI innings, averaging 34.9 runs per innings.
This batting lineup will be effective against Asalanka and Wellalage. Their respective bowling figures in the 2023 Asia Cup are 4/18 and 5/40. They are more threatening because they can come to bat when the team needs them to sustain. Their most recent batting statistics were 22 runs off of 35 deliveries and 42 runs off of 46 balls.
Consider the following top order, where Nissanka and Dimuth can set the stage for a high score. R. Premadasa Stadium has been a low-scoring pitch till the point. India scored 213 but defended it. They held Pakistan to 128 runs in their Super Four opener while chasing 357. The odds on betting sites for cricket will automatically favor the team that elects to bat first and surpass the milestone of 200 runs. It could be a low score, but it will still be a fighting total.
Having won the toss, Sri Lanka will attempt to score 230 runs while preventing Pakistan from scoring more than 200 runs in the second innings. After the initial powerplay, Sri Lanka may pick up wickets after allowing a few strokes to pass.
Pakistan, winning the toss, will first look to shake off the nervousness that has caught their minds after the previous loss. Then, their aim would also be to set a target of 230+. Assuming the opening pair does not tremble, the middle order will fight for a 250+ total.
The expectation is that spin deliveries will play a crucial role for SL, while Pakistan will likely rely on pacers for early wickets.