Asia Cup 2018: Super Four, Match 5 – India vs Afghanistan – Preview
Team India will square off against Afghanistan on September 24 at Dubai in a dress rehearsal ahead of the mega-finale clash of the ongoing Asia Cup 2018.
Meanwhile, India has dominated the proceedings so far in this six-nation tournament. On the other hand, Afghanistan lost track after scripting a great start.
However, it’s been a while since India have played Afghanistan in a limited-overs game. Their last meeting was also at an Asia Cup, in 2014. India won on that occasion, by eight wickets, in a complete mismatch, but that will hardly be the case this time around, though they will come up against a mostly similar batting line-up.
Afghanistan’s batsmen have fired every match taking their team close to winning or winning. Their spin bowling has been of top class. However, they have struggled mainly due to the weak links in fast bowling. India, meanwhile, will breathe that this encounter comes as a dead rubber with their final spot already sealed.
Furthermore, this will provide them the opportunity to rotate their squad and give some rest ahead of the Asia Cup final.
Pitch & Conditions
This will be Afghanistan’s first match in Dubai this tournament, but they won’t be greeted with conditions that will be too different from Abu Dhabi, both regarding temperature and the surface.
The average temperature is likely to be around 37 degrees Celsius, and there are no chances of rain.
Both teams chose to forego training and press conferences ahead of the game, and there are no indications of team changes as a result.
But India will look to shuffle their batting around and bring back Khaleel Ahmed to ease the load on some of their players.
Predicted XI: Rohit Sharma (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Ambati Rayudu, Manish Pandey, MS Dhoni (wk), Kedar Jadhav, Ravindra Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav, Khaleel Ahmed, Yuzvendra Chahal
Afghanistan’s seamers haven’t had the best of times, and that could tempt them to make a few changes. 18-year old right-arm fast bowler Wafadar Momand could be in line for ODI debuts.
Predicted XI: Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Ihsanullah, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan (c), Hashmatullah Shahidi, Mohammad Nabi, Samiullah Shenwari, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Wafadar Momand, Mujeeb Ur Rahman
India have more talent than their counterpart who are emerging as a superpower in the limited-overs format. They have done pretty well in the recent past, however, have lost their way in the dying moments.
The men in blues have more variety in their line-up which gives them the opportunity to experiment with their squad.
Thus, considering the experience Rohit Sharma & Co have, it will be an easy cakewalk for them.
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