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Asia Cup 2023 Predictions – Who will win the tournament?

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Last Updated on 8 months by Charbel Coorey

Cricket News: Asia Cup 2023 Predictions – Who will win the tournament? | Top run-scorer, wicket-taker, Super 4 and winner predictions

ODI cricket, now often lingering in the shadows of the T20 juggernaut, can enjoy the spotlight over the next three months. The World Cup is fast approaching, with the preceding 2023 Asia Cup serving as important preparation.

However, with the Asia Cup comes more than just preparation. Great pride is at stake between rival nations, with India-Pakistan and the ever-eventful Sri Lanka-Bangladesh contests sure to create plenty of talking points in the early stages of the tournament. And, there is possibly Pakistan vs. Afghanistan to look forward to once again.

2023 Asia Cup format details

Before we delve into some big predictions, here are some details on the tournament.

  • Teams: India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan.
  • The 2023 Asia Cup will comprise of 13 matches, with nine taking place in Sri Lanka and the other four in Pakistan.
  • The first stage will be two groups of three, with the top two qualifying for the Super Four stage.
  • In the Super Four stage, each team will play the other once. The top two sides will qualify to the Final.

2023 Asia Cup groups:

Group AGroup B
IndiaSri Lanka
PakistanAfghanistan
NepalBangladesh

Such a tournament, which is filled with stardom, is always challenging to predict. With a combination of cricketing logic (somewhat) and a gut feel, here are four predictions for the tournament.

2023 Asia Cup predictions

Leading run-scorer: Virat Kohli

There are a number of contenders for leading run-scorer. Shubman Gill and Babar Azam are two names that spring to mind.

However, there seems to be a swagger about Virat Kohli this year. More often than not, he has looked in strong touch across formats, with centuries flowing after a long drought.

Also, Kohli loves the ODI Asia Cup. In eight matches, Kohli has struck three centuries with a total of 525 runs at an average of 65.6 and strike rate of 99.4. On pitches expected to aid turn throughout the tournament, expect Kohli’s strike rotation and incredible fitness to come up trumps.

Leading wicket-taker: Shaheen Shah Afridi

Speaking of turning pitches, the likes of Kuldeep Yadav, Rashid Khan and Maheesh Theekshana are contenders for leading wicket-taker.

However, Shaheen Shah Afridi swinging the ball up-front is a sight to behold. Also, the left-armer will be key for Pakistan at the death, which brings about wicket-taking opportunities.

Add to that Shaheen’s motivation to perform against India in particular, and he has what it takes to finish atop the list.

Super Four teams: India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh

India and Pakistan will have no issues reaching the Super Four stage. Nepal have enjoyed a very promising year to date, but the step up to the two cricketing powerhouses means competitiveness – rather than victory – is a far more realistic goal.

Group B is mighty difficult to predict. Sri Lanka are the current Asia Cup champions, winning the T20 edition last year. Bangladesh are a solid ODI unit, while Afghanistan have plenty going for them.

After much deliberation, Afghanistan and Bangladesh will qualify to the Super Four stage. Sri Lanka are ravaged by injuries to key bowlers including Wanindu Hasaranga (likely to miss at least group stage) and Dushmantha Chameera (out of entire tournament).

Bangladesh have had their issues in the past against high-quality leg and mystery spin. The Tigers will have plenty of quality spin to deal with, facing up to Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, and Maheesh Theekshana, among others. However, Sri Lanka’s injuries are a huge blow for the co-hosts.

Sri Lanka play a crucial game at home against Bangladesh on Thursday (31 August). This game could decide who goes through. Of course, Afghanistan are no certainties, but their progress in recent years, bowling attack, and promising performances recently against Pakistan holds them in good stead.

Winner: Pakistan

India deservedly start the tournament as favourites. But, this will be the time Pakistan break their Asia Cup drought dating back to 2012.

Pakistan, the number one-ranked side in ODIs, look settled. Their middle order is one area of possible concern, but the length of their batting order is a big advantage. Also, their pace battery offers different points of attack, while their spinners are wily customers. Add to that the consistent Babar Azam and Imam-ul-Haq, and Pakistan should have decent starts more often than not.

India, in comparison, have a few more teething issues. Shreyas Iyer, who is likely to occupy the number four spot, is just coming off a serious back injury. KL Rahul, the number five, will miss the first match and has been out of action for an extended period. Jasprit Bumrah has had just the three T20s worth of international action since September last year, while Prasidh Krishna has only just returned from injury as well. Also, the make up of India’s XI, with the specialist bowlers likely to bat from number eight onwards, is a point of discussion.

Indeed, India are capable of bringing it altogether. But, this Asia Cup might serve as important match time for a number of players to adequately prepare for the World Cup.

While Bangladesh, Afghanistan and co. are capable of going far, Pakistan have what it takes to lift the trophy this time.

Charbel Coorey
Charbel Cooreyhttps://cricblog.net
Charbel is the owner & founder of cricblog.net, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at charbelcoorey@cricblog.net.

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