Dubai [UAE], September 10 (ANI): Sri Lanka will look to earn their sixth Asia Cup title while Pakistan will strive to end their long title gap in the continental tournament when the two teams clash in the final on Sunday.
Both teams have squared off against each other in Asia Cup finals thrice and the islanders have won twice. Sri Lanka won in 1986 and 2014 while Pakistan won in 2000.
Sri Lanka won tournaments in 1986, 1997, 2004, 2008 and 2014. They are the second-most successful team in tournament history after India, which has won seven titles.
Pakistan has won the title twice – in 2000 and 2012.
Sri Lanka started their Asia Cup 2022 campaign on a poor note with a loss to Afghanistan by eight wickets. But they bounced back in their next Group game, defeating Bangladesh by two wickets in a thriller, qualifying for the Super Four phase of the tournament.
Sri Lanka have outdone the competition in tight matches, defeating Afghanistan, India and Pakistan.
They finished the Super Four phase at the top of the table with three wins in three games.
In Sri Lanka’s campaign, some batters who have delivered brilliantly. Openers Pathum Nissanka (165 runs) and Kusal Mendis (155 runs) have been top-two scorers for their side.
Middle-order batters like Bhanuka Rajapaksa and captain Dasun Shanaka have finished matches for Sri Lanka or anchored the team out of trouble. These two middle-order stars will have to maintain caution and also deliver big hits to help their side win the title as the rest of the batting lineup has not done much.
Medium pacers Dilshan Madushanka and spinner Wanindu Hasaranga, having taken six wickets each, will be Lankan players to watch out for and will be extremely important for the team’s fortunes. Chamika Karunarathne has also taken five scalps for the side.
Pakistan started off the campaign with a five-wicket loss to arch-rivals India in the group stage. However, they bounced back strongly in the next match against Hong Kong, skittling out the side for just 38 runs to earn a 155-run win. With this victory, they qualified for the Super Four phase.
Pakistan started their Super Four phase with a five-wicket win against India. They then went on to secure a fighting one-wicket win against Afghanistan in a last-over thriller. They lost their final Super Four match against Sri Lanka by five wickets.
They finished the Super Four phase at the number two position in the points table with two wins in three matches.
A big concern heading into the final will be the form of skipper Babar Azam, who has scored only 63 runs in five innings with the best score of 30. For Pakistan to deliver in final, Azam will have to regain his touch. However, their other star batter Mohammed Rizwan is serving the side well with his 226 runs in five matches and his wicket-keeping. These two batters will be key to Pakistan’s success in the final.
Other batters and all-rounders like Fakhar Zaman, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz and Khusdil Shah have played a good part in Pakistan’s journey to the final.
Pakistan’s bowling has been strong. Spinners Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan have weaved their web perfectly, taking eight and seven wickets each. Pacers Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf have also delivered impressive performances. (ANI)
This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. TheNewsMill holds no responsibility for this content.