New Delhi. Asia Cup: After a long period of confusion, the schedule of Asia Cup has finally been announced. After Team India’s refusal to play in Pakistan due to security reasons, the matches of the tournament will be played in Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The Indian team will play its matches in Sri Lanka, while Pakistan will have to play some of its matches in its own country and some in Sri Lanka. The tournament, which will be held in ODI format, will start with the match between Pakistan and Nepal in Multan on August 30, but the eyes of the fans are fixed on the match between arch-rivals India and Pakistan. Rohit Sharma’s team India’s first match is from Pakistan, which will be played in Sri Lanka’s Kandy on September 2. By the way, in the Super-4 stage of the tournament and then in the final as well (if both teams reach the title match), both the teams will play two- Can do with two hands.
A total of 6 teams are participating in the Asia Cup – India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. In this, India, Pakistan and Nepal are in Group-A while Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan are in Group-B. Talking about the Pakistan team, the tournament schedule is busy for them. The team will play its first match against Nepal on August 30, soon after that it will have to leave for Sri Lanka to face India. This match is on September 2, which means the team has to play two matches in a gap of two days. Former Pakistan captain Salman Butt has taken a dig at the PCB and said that the board does not care about its players.
Butt said – this very strange program
Talking to Hafiz Mohammad Imran on YouTube channel, Butt said, ‘It is a very strange program. Where Pakistan is playing its first match in Pakistan, then it will go to Sri Lanka for the second match with a difference of only two days. On the other hand, Sri Lanka will play their first match at their home ground while this team will have to go to Pakistan for the second match, so they will have a gap of 4-5 days. He said, ‘Pakistan, which is basically the host country, will get a gap of only two days. We never care about our players.’ He said, ‘What are we proving with this schedule. One tournament is happening, one flight is coming here, one is going there. This is not Karachi which is three hours away. Come from Lahore to Karachi and fly from Karachi to Lahore, there is a change over inside it. If you go from Sri Lanka to Dubai and come from Dubai to Lahore then it is a flight of five to six hours with change.
The release shared by Asian Cricket Council (ACC) president Jay Shah clearly states that Pakistan will remain A1 and India A2 irrespective of their position after the first round. If none of them qualify, Nepal will take their place. If both the arch-rivals qualify, their Super-4 match will be held in Colombo. Teams in both the groups will play each other once. Top-2 teams will qualify for Super-4 round. India-Pakistan from Group-A are likely to reach Super-4, on the other hand from Group-B. The claim of Sri Lanka and Bangladesh is strong. Matches in Super-4 round will be played on round robin basis. Where each team will compete with the remaining 3 teams. After this stage, the final will be played between the first and second placed teams. The final match will be held in Colombo.
FIRST PUBLISHED : July 20, 2023, 13:50 IST