Team India will be going at almost full strength, with the exception of injured KL Rahul, as they take on arch-rivals Pakistan in match No. 3 of the Asia Cup 2023 in Pallekele International Stadium in Kandy on Saturday. This is the first ODI match between the neighbours after a gap of over 4 years.
Rohit Sharma’s side will see plenty of changes from the team which played the third and final ODI against West Indies a couple of months back. Both skipper Rohit and former captain Virat Kohli will return to the playing 11 – on the cusp of major milestones on ODI cricket. Rohit Sharma is close to completing 10,000 runs in ODI cricket while Kohli needs 102 more runs to reach 13,000 runs in ODIs.
Apart from these two, Kolkata Knight Riders captain Shreyas Iyer has recovered from injury and is available to return to international cricket since getting injured in a Test match against Australia in Ahmedabad in March this year. Iyer will be expected to take up the number 4 position in the ODI set up in the lead up to the Cricket World Cup 2023.
Wicketkeeper Ishan Kishan, who opened the innings in the Caribbean and won the ‘Player of the Series’ award for scoring three successive fifties in ODI vs West Indies, will be batting in the middle-order in the No. 5 position in the absence of KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant.
In the bowling department, Jasprit Bumrah will also return to ODIs after making his return to international cricket after a gap of almost 11 months. Bumrah bowled impressively as he led Team India to a 2-0 T20I series win over Ireland last month.
It will be a toss-up between all-rounder Shardul Thakur and Mohammed Shami for the third seamer’s position as Mohammed Siraj will be expected to partner Bumrah with the new ball in the contest. Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Siraj will handle the spin-bowling duties and all-rounder Hardik Pandya will be the sixth bowler for India.
Pakistan, on the other hand, have named the same playing 11 which thrashed Nepal by 238 runs in their opening match of the Asia Cup 2023 in Multan on Wednesday. Skipper Babar Azam will have the services of Shaheen Shah Afridi, Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf, although there was some doubt over the fitness of Afridi after the 1st game.
— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) September 1, 2023
India: Rohit Sharma (c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Ishan Kishan (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Shardul Thakur/Mohammed Shami, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Siraj, Jasprit Bumrah
Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Agha Salman, Iftikhar Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf