Asia Cup 2010 June 14, 2010

A tournament that can give context to ODIs

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Thanks to the unsettlingly quick rise of Twenty20s, the one-day format has increasingly looked like the ugly sister of the cricket family, seemingly possessing neither the glamour and fast-paced action provided by the shortest form, nor the traditional appeal and scope-for-narrative that underpins Test cricket.

Critics also point to the amount of fluff associated with one-day cricket: the game itself has the monotonous middle overs (which Cricket Australia is trying to get rid of with a 40-over two-innings concept at domestic level), while its calendar is packed with soon-forgotten bilateral series and barely-followed triangulars.

The ICC's buzzword for the keeping the five-day game relevant has been 'context', but the one-day format is arguably in more urgent need of a booster shot of context. The Asia Cup, with four Test nations participating, could provide just that if it is nurtured into a credible continental championship.

That isn't going to happen without proper scheduling. The crowds cold-shouldered the previous edition in Pakistan since it was staged in the sapping heat of June and July, not traditional cricket months in the country. This time, the 10th edition, all matches are in the small central Sri Lankan town of Dambulla, and not in the bigger centres like Colombo, at least in part because Dambulla is spared the brunt of the monsoon in June, a month in which Sri Lanka has hosted only one one-day tournament before - the rain-ravaged Singer Akai Nidahas Trophy in 1998.

Also, unlike the quadrennial World Cup, the Asia Cup is an ad-hoc event, sometimes put to bed for four years, and sometimes revived after a two-year gap. The recent five-year television deal with Nimbus should at least ensure a biennial event till 2014.

This year's competition, though, could clearly do with a spot of marketing. The sports fan's gaze and the newspaper columns are already concentrated on the football World Cup in South Africa, and the lack of buzz in the build-up to the Asia Cup is not helping turn their focus to Dambulla. A case in point: No international cricket match spells box-office jackpot as much as an India-Pakistan encounter, especially since the two sides have faced off only once in nearly two years, but hardly anyone seems excited about Saturday's marquee clash.

On the plus side, the tournament has been streamlined and the absence of lightweights like Hong Kong and UAE will reduce the number of mismatches which marred the previous edition. And the organisers will be happy to have got all four major Asian cricketing countries to play, something which has not always happened in the past to a tournament that has long been hostage to the fractious political relations in the region - India refused to play in Sri Lanka in 1985-86 and Pakistan cited safety concerns for withdrawing in 1990-91 in India.

The previous two editions were won by Sri Lanka, who are slight favourites this time as well. They have proven performers at the top of the order, and the likes of Thilina Kandamby and Thilan Samaraweera who aren't big hitters will be under less pressure to manufacture strokes in bowler-friendly Dambulla, where the highest total posted so far is only 289. Add to that their varied spin threats - Muttiah Muralitharan, Suraj Randiv and Rangana Herath - and they should prove difficult to beat.

Their most familiar opponents over the past two years are India, who were champions the first four times they played the tournament but have now gone 15 years without winning it. They have been patchy in one-dayers this year, but have a superb recent record in ODIs in Sri Lanka - winning their previous two bilateral series and a tri-series as well. With the World cup eight months away, India are using the tournament to experiment on their combination, particularly after their bench strength was shown up in the recent series in Zimbabwe.

Pakistan have had their regular cocktail of suspensions and fines, climbdowns and U-turns to turn up with something resembling their full strength team. How Shahid Afridi and coach Waqar Younis will unite a team riven by serious dressing-room trouble remains to be seen. So too the form of fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar, whose career has a zombie-like ability to repeatedly return from the dead.

Rounding out the competition is Bangladesh, who remains the kid brother among the big boys of Asian cricket. They have a couple of world-class players in Tamim Iqbal and captain Shakib Al Hasan, and their phalanx of spinners will prove a handful on the slow Dambulla surface.

Siddarth Ravindran is a sub-editor at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • SLfan on June 16, 2010, 0:21 GMT

    I have a feeling that investing on Kapugedera is going to be a total waste, considering the statistics of his performance. He has given so many chances, but in 90% of them, he has let down the spectators. No doubt, he is extremely talented, having pure hitting skills, but problem is in his mental fitness. He has played 74 ODIs with an batting avg of 21.66 scoring just 6 half centuries. Mathews has played just 21 ODIs with an batting avg of 33.66 scoring 5 half centuries already. Compare between these 2 performances....Even Kandambi has already scored 5 half centuries from just 31 ODIs with an avg of 32.33. Stats suggest that investing on him would be better for Sri Lanka cricket...Something about Maharoof...He once again proved what he is capable of & his pathetic performance y'day ultimately lead us to believe that Thissara is a far better allrounder, who is a decent bowler as well as a hard hitting batsmen.

  • randikaayya on June 15, 2010, 17:43 GMT

    For all those who were wondering what 'context' the tournament and the game of ODI has you got the perfect answer in its very first game. Two fiercely competitive teams, a packed house on a weekday who made merry, some great cricket being dished out were just the highlights. There were so many positives about this start, starting from the resurgence of Pakistan back into big league as a full unit! Bravo Mali, bravo SL, bravo Pakistan..!

  • Gopalakrishna on June 15, 2010, 8:26 GMT

    A Good preview which brings out the true credentials of Asia Cup, which is not happening at regular periodic intervals. Siddarth Ravindran hopes that it would happen with Nimbus at the helm of affiars for telecast till 2014. Let us hope for the best. Thanks Siddarth and Cricinfo - Gopal, Bangalore

  • on June 15, 2010, 5:07 GMT

    INDIA VS PAKISTAN....BRING IT ON!!!!!......PAKISTAN KA MTLAB KYA?????

  • emmwill on June 15, 2010, 4:38 GMT

    This "context" thing is utter rubbish. ODIs have their own context already. T20 is the form of the game that needs this "context". T20 is not really authentic cricket. It is like a carnival of the bat hitting the ball. There is hardly any real clash between both. Leave ODIs alone!

  • luckylove on June 15, 2010, 4:11 GMT

    hi.....its not surprising....with team India on all time low...even die hard fans have been put off....& the Fifa World Cup does not help either....hope that Dhoni & Boys would do something more cheering....to welcome the monsson & escape the sapping heat....well all the best to the men...ooops...sorry...boys in Blue.....

  • Ravernp on June 15, 2010, 3:59 GMT

    Plying just 4 country no qualify match nor including other nation name asia cup. Please name it 4nation cup not asia cup we cricket fan don't like this name, don't insult asia naming.

  • Ramkumar2010 on June 15, 2010, 3:58 GMT

    Pakistan will be tested with their unity and character throught out this tournament and this team, though looks strong in paper, does not have the batting depth that requires for a 50 over side. Pakistans batting will be revolved only with their main stay of Umar Akmal and Salman Bhat. They need to act as a senior pro and guide this young batting unit through this 50 overs, otherwise this team does not look like batting the full quota of 50 overs. Also, the presence of Shoaib Malik back in the team, might not be taken positively by the team, as Shoaib has been pulled earlier haviing creating ruffles within the team. There will be a lot to prove for Akhtar too, as at the age of 35, he needs to prove his calibre once again. How well Afridi be able to prove his mettle in the 50over format, needs to be seen. He is generally a restless cricketer and it all depends on how well can he mould himself and his team.

  • on June 15, 2010, 3:26 GMT

    What happened to Umar Gul? Bring him back man! And Sohail Tanvir?

  • on June 15, 2010, 2:32 GMT

    I must say I am impressed with Arvinda desilva, I feel it is a great move out to play mendis, and use it as a surprise weapon for world cup, especially for teams like NZ, Eng, Aus, SA. Pakistan should also look for a surprize spinner like usman qadir. I dont care if Pakistan looses as long as they play as a unit...It is just a game after all and let the best team win.

  • SLfan on June 16, 2010, 0:21 GMT

    I have a feeling that investing on Kapugedera is going to be a total waste, considering the statistics of his performance. He has given so many chances, but in 90% of them, he has let down the spectators. No doubt, he is extremely talented, having pure hitting skills, but problem is in his mental fitness. He has played 74 ODIs with an batting avg of 21.66 scoring just 6 half centuries. Mathews has played just 21 ODIs with an batting avg of 33.66 scoring 5 half centuries already. Compare between these 2 performances....Even Kandambi has already scored 5 half centuries from just 31 ODIs with an avg of 32.33. Stats suggest that investing on him would be better for Sri Lanka cricket...Something about Maharoof...He once again proved what he is capable of & his pathetic performance y'day ultimately lead us to believe that Thissara is a far better allrounder, who is a decent bowler as well as a hard hitting batsmen.

  • randikaayya on June 15, 2010, 17:43 GMT

    For all those who were wondering what 'context' the tournament and the game of ODI has you got the perfect answer in its very first game. Two fiercely competitive teams, a packed house on a weekday who made merry, some great cricket being dished out were just the highlights. There were so many positives about this start, starting from the resurgence of Pakistan back into big league as a full unit! Bravo Mali, bravo SL, bravo Pakistan..!

  • Gopalakrishna on June 15, 2010, 8:26 GMT

    A Good preview which brings out the true credentials of Asia Cup, which is not happening at regular periodic intervals. Siddarth Ravindran hopes that it would happen with Nimbus at the helm of affiars for telecast till 2014. Let us hope for the best. Thanks Siddarth and Cricinfo - Gopal, Bangalore

  • on June 15, 2010, 5:07 GMT

    INDIA VS PAKISTAN....BRING IT ON!!!!!......PAKISTAN KA MTLAB KYA?????

  • emmwill on June 15, 2010, 4:38 GMT

    This "context" thing is utter rubbish. ODIs have their own context already. T20 is the form of the game that needs this "context". T20 is not really authentic cricket. It is like a carnival of the bat hitting the ball. There is hardly any real clash between both. Leave ODIs alone!

  • luckylove on June 15, 2010, 4:11 GMT

    hi.....its not surprising....with team India on all time low...even die hard fans have been put off....& the Fifa World Cup does not help either....hope that Dhoni & Boys would do something more cheering....to welcome the monsson & escape the sapping heat....well all the best to the men...ooops...sorry...boys in Blue.....

  • Ravernp on June 15, 2010, 3:59 GMT

    Plying just 4 country no qualify match nor including other nation name asia cup. Please name it 4nation cup not asia cup we cricket fan don't like this name, don't insult asia naming.

  • Ramkumar2010 on June 15, 2010, 3:58 GMT

    Pakistan will be tested with their unity and character throught out this tournament and this team, though looks strong in paper, does not have the batting depth that requires for a 50 over side. Pakistans batting will be revolved only with their main stay of Umar Akmal and Salman Bhat. They need to act as a senior pro and guide this young batting unit through this 50 overs, otherwise this team does not look like batting the full quota of 50 overs. Also, the presence of Shoaib Malik back in the team, might not be taken positively by the team, as Shoaib has been pulled earlier haviing creating ruffles within the team. There will be a lot to prove for Akhtar too, as at the age of 35, he needs to prove his calibre once again. How well Afridi be able to prove his mettle in the 50over format, needs to be seen. He is generally a restless cricketer and it all depends on how well can he mould himself and his team.

  • on June 15, 2010, 3:26 GMT

    What happened to Umar Gul? Bring him back man! And Sohail Tanvir?

  • on June 15, 2010, 2:32 GMT

    I must say I am impressed with Arvinda desilva, I feel it is a great move out to play mendis, and use it as a surprise weapon for world cup, especially for teams like NZ, Eng, Aus, SA. Pakistan should also look for a surprize spinner like usman qadir. I dont care if Pakistan looses as long as they play as a unit...It is just a game after all and let the best team win.

  • on June 15, 2010, 2:31 GMT

    this Asia Cup will be a boring tournament , causes :

    1) time of Fifa 2010...... where all 202 nations participate.....and in the finale play the 32's................

    and look at the cricket............ we r decreasing numbers while we r proceeding forwards..............

    2) if it had been a t-20 and more asian teams . like : Nepal and Afghanistan could have made it.......easily............ and i think they r suppressed by the giants.. in fact in world football the format is so nice that Brazil or Argentina or even England dont say that the world cup shud only include the worldcup winners...............and so it is so nice, so exciting.... there is no overdose ....

    i think i will have nausea to see another India Srilanka encounter..........hahhhahaha actually cricket is becoming so boring..... even south africa west indies test match es are also boring...........

  • Hodge008 on June 15, 2010, 1:43 GMT

    Is this the same article published before every ODI tournament for about two and a half years? Not EVERY tournament can be "the make-or-break tournament for ODI's future" ...

  • Deenesh on June 15, 2010, 0:41 GMT

    Subcontinent tournament with a flustered Pak team, a tactically rested Sl team(and their most prolific batsman dropped), and an underage Bang. team. India with thier batting firepower rivaled only by SL have a genuine chance. Spin will be a major factor, and Indian spinners will not dissapoint. Again Sl challenges them in this category. in terms of pace bowling, Sl are by far the surperior side, but the pitches will offer little encouragement. An india-SL match-up is a toss-up. Whoever performs better on the day will take the honors, although im of the opinion that if Inida make the finals, the cup is thiers.

  • on June 14, 2010, 22:46 GMT

    India vs. Pakistan on Saturday certainly could bring smiles back to the Pakistan dressing room temporarily should they win

  • on June 14, 2010, 22:37 GMT

    They should invite at least two more teams for this tournament - choose from Afghanistan, Nepal, UAE, Bahrain, based on some qualifying criteria - rank, recent performance etc. Such a great opportunity to promote cricket in other Asian countries, but instead its the same four playing every time.

  • AndyZaltzmannsHair on June 14, 2010, 21:19 GMT

    I believe one from either Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan or Bangladesh will win this particular tournament. Don't hold me to that though.

  • on June 14, 2010, 21:10 GMT

    to all the indian fans who think india will win the asia cup. STOP DREAMING. everyone knows india is the worst team in multi naton tournaments. last t20 3 consecutive defeats in super 6 t20 09 3 consecutive defeats in super 6 lost kitply cup final lost asia cup final knocked out first round in champions trophy

    pakistan is the only team who reached the semi finals of all ICC events since 2007. and sri lanka always performs well in multi nation tournaments.

  • BigINDFan on June 14, 2010, 20:18 GMT

    SL are the favorites as mentioned by the author. Reasons why India should not be ruled out as contenders as lot of people have predicted here:

    1. The pitche(s) in Dambulla do not have too much pace and bounce unlike T20 World cups in Eng and WI.

    2. Pak has not played India in a long while now, Bang have to really bat to put up a score and SL is missing a trick by not playing Mendis no matter what the tactical reasons are.

    IND team - Please do us all a favor and select Ojha or Ashwin over Jadeja. He is neither a batsman nor a bowler and Bhajji cannot carry the load on his own.

    Good luck India!

  • LALITHKURUWITA on June 14, 2010, 20:16 GMT

    @ asadkum, They do not play for 3rd Play off game. So how come PAK & BAN play?

  • LALITHKURUWITA on June 14, 2010, 20:13 GMT

    @Sumeet Singh , India has to improve their fielding and running between wickets. They are very lazy in those and probably the worst.

  • sampreeth_crik on June 14, 2010, 18:28 GMT

    India has good chance this time,due to the form of its batsmen s like kohli,rohith sharma,dhoni,R jadeja,Raina,along with the sehwag and gauti in threre back yards,but not sure about there form. and next strong point this time is the quality of fielding kohli,rohith sharma,dhoni,R jadeja,Raina,gauti can create a blockade of the opposition runs. sharma and the raina,kohli,jadeja are very good enough to be called a quality fielders.bowling will be bolstered by joining of the nehra, bhajji,zaheer khan,and swing bowler praveen kumar very use full in seaming wicket, and use full down order batsmen. and supported by the jadeja. dhinda also useful and India can use the ashwin as a surprise package.nehra is a specialist in the death bowling,and praveen good initially.and ever dangerous zaheer kahn bowling in a low scoring track create a more dangerous. on slow track fielding and running between wicket is very crucial so Indian young lads are very use full.bangla,pak will go out so lanka/india

  • Deepfreezed on June 14, 2010, 18:02 GMT

    All the PAK have to do is ball good length fast (above 140Km). Hapless SRI line up will crumble like a deck of cards. If using spin, use spinner with height and bounce.

  • on June 14, 2010, 16:38 GMT

    to all srilankan and pakistan fans.u believe india will get kicked out of the tournamrnt.but by the way which team has crushed srilanka 3 times in a series row all in dambulla & colombo.so plz don't forget the past.history repeats itself.and to pakistanis india wasn't the team to lost all its matches to aus it was the team to beat australia in australia.so plz stop ur team infighting & then think about beating india.i think bangladesh is much better than u both talent wise its just experience they r lacking.so plz stop pionting out india's weakness & concentrate on ur team

  • on June 14, 2010, 16:18 GMT

    How SL's are thinking that they will win when india have the greats like Sehwag, Gauti, Dhoni..etc. It's really obvious that the same indian team kicked them in their own back yard last two bilateral serious. they have only two World class sanga and Mahela... But thay won't good enough to beat the Indian team. Anyway good luck. But this wish either help their loss against indians hehehe....

  • asadkum on June 14, 2010, 16:00 GMT

    Mohammad Asad from USA........ Don't laugh !!! it's cricket.............Like to see Bangladesh and Pak in final.....

  • KingOwl on June 14, 2010, 15:22 GMT

    I am waiting to see how the wicket plays. In the past I remember that the toss had a lot to do with the result. In the morning, it seams so much that the team batting first invariably loses. For day night matches, lights have such a big impact too. If that trend continues, it can become a big farce. I just hope it doesn't happen this time. As far as the winner of the tournament - I think any team except B'desh can win the cup. India and SL are more stable and professional. Pakistan can always spring a surprise - they certainly have the talent, their problem is their 'complexity' as people.

  • rezmata on June 14, 2010, 14:46 GMT

    Ya Shahidheen big disappointment with all the matches on weekdays. Well as always BCCI has the last say, so the've got the most commercial match (Ind Vs Pak) on the only available weekend to make big broadcasting money. Also, there is a superstition that India loses all its matches against Pakistan if they play on a Friday. Like to check it out with our stats guru.

  • on June 14, 2010, 14:27 GMT

    @ FarazSomjee Pakistan is an underdog? Since when? They are after all the only team to make every ICC event semifinal since the 2007 T20 World Cup. Unfair to include them as underdogs with Bangladesh when you consider that. Unpredictable definitely!

    @ Rezwan Haq & Zayed Khan Bangladesh might win a fluke match or two but never the whole series! SL, India or Pakistan aren't sending their 3rd string team unfortunately (((:

    @ Kushank Gulati Precisely they need to get rid of that hopeless Jadeja joker and bring back Pathan he's worth a try was once the best bowler in the team and that's something Jadeja can never do with bat or ball!

  • Da-Silva1996 on June 14, 2010, 14:22 GMT

    These Pakistan supporters amuse me thinking their team will win the Asia Cup because they fluked the T20 world cup last time around.T20 is a wild card which requires no skill, only bashing so it's basically a lottery.Pakistan is measurable to Bangladesh in 50 overs and they lack quality players.Bringing back Akhtar is like father christmas bowling to the teams and he will easliy be taken to the cleaners.India are over-rated and when they get defeated, the supporters will say they lost because Sachin was missing.The lankan Lions should blast the whole batch of them!!!!

  • rezmata on June 14, 2010, 14:13 GMT

    Ya Shahidheen big disappointment with all the matches on weekdays. Well as always BCCI has the last say, so the've got the most commercial match (Ind Vs Pak) on the only available weekend to make big money. Also, there is a superstition that India loses all its matches against Pakistan if they play on a Friday. Like to check it out with our stats guru.

  • BeeArr on June 14, 2010, 13:59 GMT

    I have a doubt. As a long term fan of Pakistan cricket from the glory days of W's, I find one thing amusing. When they see a real talent, they kill it. What happened to Basit Ali whom Brian Lara once considered will become a 'great'. In the recent years, they have not found proper batsmen. What happened to Nasir Jamshed, a teenager playing with a cool head and good technique. Was impressive, but got dropped. Imran Nazir, had they tempered his aggression with some batting foundation, he would have been a world beater. Now he is almost a failed material. All I want to see is a sound batting line up to score the runs that the bowlers can defend. Bring back Jamshed, dont waste fawad. He has good temperament. If fawad and Jamshed are not given chances now, then what happened to that technically sound batsman called Asim kamal will only happen to these promising youngsters. There are test match quality players . But they are not persisted with--- A fan who supports Pak after Chennai-98 win.

  • Alokp on June 14, 2010, 13:47 GMT

    India won't make the finals. I predict a Pakistan-SL finals to be won by Pakistan coming back spectacularly after having imploded ignominiously against the same opponents in the group stage. Bangladesh will beat India who will go back empty handed (again) as nobody notices given that everyone was watching the football world cup, anyway.

  • basshred on June 14, 2010, 13:43 GMT

    It'll be really close, I put my money on SL over India and Pak, though.

  • on June 14, 2010, 13:36 GMT

    As usual SL will kick Ind out of the tournament...:)

  • on June 14, 2010, 13:21 GMT

    This Asia Cup would have been exciting if it was a 20-20 tournament and some 6 more countries would have played in................ Cricket is becoming a boring game...... as only 10 major nations are participating..........we even dont want more than 5/6 teams in the world cup cricket and we r always talking about decreasing number of test members................ Cricket has become a business now a days.........

    So, the ICC shud think of spreading the game in the world............... think ICC : if there are 30 major countries in t-20 instead of 3/4 major test nations......... what will ur business do > ? rise or fall ? donot think of temporary interest , think in a broader way.................

    Same players of same countries playing boring game not do much to increase its popularity as it is in Football...........

    And in twenty twentys ................. all the teams shud play qualifying round among may be 50/60 teams......... in next 40 yrs u see what changes occur......

  • jackiethepen on June 14, 2010, 13:20 GMT

    I'm not sure about tournaments designed for just the big contenders who play each other anyway. If you look at the world football cup, a lot of minnows make exciting progress and that often makes the tournament as much as the big games. I think there is an arrogance in cricket which deplores the rise of minnows. They are bound to fail but sometimes can knock out big teams. India and Pakistan departed from such games in the last 50-over world cup. This is about TV contracts not potential teams. Once India and Pakistan were out a lot of TV money was lost. I thought the Irish games were the highlight of that tournament. There is no glamour to dull certainty. England drew with the US in football when we should have trounced them. But there were a lot of thrilled spectators watching TV in the States. What interest there was in the T20 Afghanistan cricket team. The death of any sport is when it becomes top level with no surprises. So I will be supporting Bangladesh - my reason for interest.

  • Vikram_Rathore on June 14, 2010, 12:14 GMT

    Surely... this will mark the beginning of Indian juggernaut in Asia Cup, once again.

  • on June 14, 2010, 12:05 GMT

    pakistan is also very power packed

  • RanilDeSIlva on June 14, 2010, 12:01 GMT

    @Fazmil - Its NOT raining in Dambulla nmate.. all games will be plauyed in full 50 overs for sure.. R U staying in Colombo 250kms away from this ground? On the context of the game,, all 4 teams will be grouming to find out what is the best possitble team to take in the world cupp so this will be a real eye opener.. let them be slow scoring games which means the talent and the craftmenship of the batsmen will be the KEY to Success here..

  • on June 14, 2010, 11:59 GMT

    PAKISTAN WILL WIN ! IT IS NOT SO MUCH DIFFICULT !

  • Shahidheen on June 14, 2010, 11:56 GMT

    placing every single Sri Lankan match during the weekdays is not going to help matters. this is not India or Pakistan to place a IND Vs PAK match on a weekend. seriously! what were they thinking?

  • RaDIN on June 14, 2010, 11:55 GMT

    Forget about the recent Zimbabwe Tri-series. India, despite fielding 'B' team, lost bcoz, each time the team which batted 2nd won the game. Even the so called winners Sri Lanka couldn't change the scenario in the last match of the league against Zimbabwe! Prior to this (atleast since 1-2 years), India have demolished all the teams in ODIs (Even Sri Lanka in their own backyard). So its obvious that India will have a fruitful time & they'll go back home with yet another spectacular show & the ASIA CUP 2010 trophy!

  • hsengiv86 on June 14, 2010, 11:41 GMT

    have any one notices it, starting from the beginning of the Asia cup in 1983, Srilanka has made it to the finals on all occasions except the inaugural one (8 out of 9 times)

  • Faizan-Ul-Haq-Fareedi on June 14, 2010, 11:33 GMT

    Now its a time to face most dangeras Team... Pak... As Shoaib Akter is back... and they have Salman Butt, Shahzaib Hasan, Akmal's Brothers.. and New BLood.. Afridi REally Brave Caption as Younis Khan and Kamaran Khan. hope Pak will give tough time to all teams... Long Live Pakistan.....

  • kabiraa on June 14, 2010, 11:30 GMT

    Why is AFGHANISTAN not playing in the ASIA cup???!!!!

    It is the most improved and exciting among the associate teams in the world and even after being granted ODI status, it has not been invited. If such teams are not given a chance to participate now.. then when? Quite clearly there is little meaning in calling this as a ASIA cup tournament. It is merely a practice ODI tournament involving the test nations of ASIA ahead of next year's world cup.

  • SABD on June 14, 2010, 11:26 GMT

    It seems this time around Bangladesh is going to give the contenders a run for the money. Bangladesh has improved their cricket a lot over the last 12 months, especially their batting. It's unfortunate for them that the results didn't go their way during this period. Those days are well over when we could see them with a shaky batting line-up with all the top order batsmen averaging in the 'teens to early 20s' range. They have 4 batsmen(Shakib, Mahmudullah, Kayes & Naeem) who average 30+ in ODIs. Although Tamim averages just below 30 in ODIs, the kind of form he is in (3 run-a-ball hundreds and 8 fifties in his last 14 test innings, test avg. 41, ranked 17th in tests just after Ponting and Dravid), it seems he will soon push his ODI average beyond the mid 30s region. On the other hand, Bangladesh have the best all-rounder and 2nd best bowler in ODI both in the form of their skipper Shakib Al Hasan. They also have Mortaza & Razzak who are also among the top bowlers in this format.

  • mani86 on June 14, 2010, 11:24 GMT

    as usual in SL the dew will play a major factor. the team batting second will usually win. boring :(

  • on June 14, 2010, 11:22 GMT

    There wil be a war b\w Dashing Opener V.Shwag v\s S.Aktar. I am Greedy to watch Ind v\s pak match b\w Cool Captain M.S.Dhoni v\s Boom Boom S.Afridi. I Wish very Gud Luck Indian Players .

  • tanvir1974 on June 14, 2010, 11:18 GMT

    As per my experience in the near past about cricket i want to say that there is no one much favourite,all teams have equal oppurtinity to play well and show their performance to win.India has big batsmans but not bowling not much effective,Srilanka has edge of little bit batting with spin bowling, Pakistan is in same position too and Bangladesh is also not bad. that is the ranking in past also but this time need to see what can doIindia and which roll play Pakistan with Srilanka and Bangladesh. it is game one will to lose.the important thing is exciting that all are neighbour countries and people of asia will be much interested to see their players in action especially tamim,muralli,sehwag,shoaib akhtar.

  • GemsBond on June 14, 2010, 11:11 GMT

    India and SL start as favorites...will see what happens next as its alwayz a game of incertainity. Hoping for good games as Ban is also improving

  • on June 14, 2010, 11:07 GMT

    well watch out for new Pakistan Built up and iam sure fire power of Boom Boom and Rawalpindi express would make it hard for other contenders this tyme...

  • LALITHKURUWITA on June 14, 2010, 11:03 GMT

    SL is favourites because of they are superior in running between wickets and in fielding. That is the edge. India is last in those fields. Probably yound BAN comes second.

  • Nervewrecker on June 14, 2010, 10:47 GMT

    Yawn! I am giving the Asia Cup a cold shoulder. Infact I have taken an oath not to watch any more India vs Sri Lanka matches for the next 4 years! Talk of overdose. Moreover, nothing comes between me and the FIFA World Cup. On one side we have a rarity called international football matches, on the other side, the brutal torture of watching India and Sri Lanka go head to head again. Go ahead but spare me please.

  • Z.Saleem on June 14, 2010, 10:42 GMT

    Don't rule out Pakistan....they have the potential to win this! And with Shoaib Akhtar back u can't say anything!!!!

    Go Pakistan go!!!!!

  • on June 14, 2010, 10:34 GMT

    Yes India will win until the final is paid. Similar senario in all global format particularly as per India media

  • Saim93 on June 14, 2010, 10:33 GMT

    Cricinfo itself downplays ODI's a lot, I haven't heard that many people talk about ODI's as much as cricinfo does. I think we should all just enjoy the tournament rather than bring up this topic which has been going on non stop for the last 1 or 2 years.

  • on June 14, 2010, 10:23 GMT

    India will win the tropy with ease ..

  • on June 14, 2010, 10:15 GMT

    Now ODI is very boring.. i think football is better to enjoy then T20I.. leave ODI and Test matches....

  • soumyas on June 14, 2010, 10:08 GMT

    there shud be 2 matches with each team... just 6 matches r not enough to decide finalists and then champions...

  • on June 14, 2010, 10:04 GMT

    Pakistan, with the return of senior players and an aggressive captain, will definitely win this time INSHALLAH ...

  • on June 14, 2010, 9:59 GMT

    All the best and good luck to sri lankan cricket team .....!

  • on June 14, 2010, 9:31 GMT

    Include T20s for Asia Cup each year

  • on June 14, 2010, 9:22 GMT

    All depends on the TOSS at Dambulla,if it is a day game you better bowl first, if its a D/N game you better bat first it is simple as zat.Batsmen needs to adapt and bowlers needs to find line and length,my personal opinion it that the pitch will stay low and slow and offer only little bounce,bowl will swing early on and spin will take over later on.Batsmen needs to manuer the stike cz there will be limited boundry opportunities in Dambulla,and last but not least Fielding iz Key.Hpping to see a Sri Lanka vs India Final.HOPE,SL WILL EMERGE VICTORIOUS FOR THE THIRD CONCECUTIVE TIME...........

  • on June 14, 2010, 9:17 GMT

    Sri Lanka All The Way !!!

  • LALITHKURUWITA on June 14, 2010, 9:12 GMT

    Although SL is favorites anything can happen. Skipper has a bigger say in winning the tournament. This is a good test for Afridi's captaincy. Good luck to all teams but IND, PAK, & BAN.

  • Umair_umair on June 14, 2010, 9:10 GMT

    "monotonous middle overs" , its the media who just wants to insert this term in the heads of people. These "monotonous middle overs" were always there. This is the game folks, How keep the wickets and build the momentum for final overs, how the game goes up and down.

    Test cricket has sooooooo many "monotonous overs", so will you also stop that? No. Becasue thats the beauty of the game. Same to 50 Over ODIs. So we get a few "monotonous middle overs" in T20 also, so will you make it T10 ?

    Please Stop this "monotonous middle overs", thing; which suddenly came along ,within last one year or so, after 38-39 Years of ODIs. Since we have all the three forms, so we can choose what we want to see.

  • on June 14, 2010, 9:09 GMT

    never count out bangladesh this makes an exiting tournament

  • Saikat_Chakraborty on June 14, 2010, 8:55 GMT

    It should be a more long tournament which may contain 10-12 match,then final. We want ODI more than T20.

  • solangaarachchi on June 14, 2010, 8:36 GMT

    In home condition SL should be favourites. But we can't underestimate the powerfull indian batting line up. They can chase any total in given condition. Especially power hitting Shwag. When he gets going it is nightmare for even great names likes of Murali. On the other hand Pakistan always unpredictable. They can turn the table any time. Bangladesh still far from course. Anyway looking forward to see great contest.

  • Shen_Mark on June 14, 2010, 8:07 GMT

    SL Champions!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • on June 14, 2010, 8:06 GMT

    when will the Indian selectors learn that India needs a quality all-rounder like Irfan Pathan instead of a Ravindra Jadeja..............how can people say that Irfan is out of form when he hasn't played international cricket from the past 1 year............India seems to have a winning combination when Irfan is in the team.

  • on June 14, 2010, 8:01 GMT

    this time it is bangladesh

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:56 GMT

    sri lanka will win the tropy with ease ..they are in good form

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:49 GMT

    Dhoni's men can do what happened before 15 years

  • ROLAYH on June 14, 2010, 7:42 GMT

    Sorry if it sounds rude....but Booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrring......

    I am not against the ODIs but this tournament looks useless and we can do without this on Calendar.... :)

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:36 GMT

    I don't think it will be a vital to expect the special occasions at the field as the very bed whether in Srilanka. D/L will be the player of this Asia cup.

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:36 GMT

    india will win this time

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:15 GMT

    They are saying that with help of Asia Cup they promote cricket to other parts of Asia and help develop the game in continent which is really false. There is nothing called as 'cup' in Asia cup as it is almost like a tri-series involving a 4th team (Bangladesh) and has nothing else to do. Instead of compressing the calendar, we could do away with Asia Cup after 2011 as anyhow they will be taken part in next Asiads (Asian Games).

  • FarazSomjee on June 14, 2010, 7:11 GMT

    Srilanka is top favourite with the most balanced side and Indai ofcourse will be the second favourite. I would love to see Bangladesh and Pakistan (the two Asian underdogs) in the final.

  • Rag-Aaron on June 14, 2010, 6:47 GMT

    Here we go again, people are saying the same things about ODIs that they said before the Champions Trophy in South Africa last year. Sometimes I think ideas gather force without much thought occurring as people just keep repeating things over and over like a mantra. "ODIs need to prove their relevance" and "the middle overs are boring" are my favourites.

    Last Years Champions Trophy was a great success and ODIs still receive miles more crowd support than Test Matches. Those ''boring overs' in the middle of an ODI innings are part of the ebb and flow of a match in which strategy is paramount and it seems really odd to hear journalists repeatedly failing to grasp these simple concepts.

    I'm not some die-hard fan of ODIs and wouldn't especially miss them if they died out but I bet the TV companies and advertisers would be a little alarmed to see the ODI suddenly dissappear. Yes there are too many meaningless ODI s in the schedule but there really is no need to panic just yet.

  • on June 14, 2010, 6:40 GMT

    Well.. All the best to Asia Cup and ODIs especailly in Asia because I personally do not think that thi scup is going to attract audience which we used to have in Sharjah, Pakistan, India and sometimes in Sri Lanka too and this year i am damn sure the Sri Lanka crowd will prove me right and it has nothing to do with Football world cup. ODIs and tests are missing their spark and only ICC is to be blamed for that. These events are not being marketed as they should have been. Selection of places, lack of celebrities, lack of prize money, poor umpiring standards all are adding to the downfall of Cricket and this is the beginning of Cricket's Recession in Asia.

  • 5860733 on June 14, 2010, 6:25 GMT

    PAk IS Great... PAkistAN ZinDABaad

  • sawn on June 14, 2010, 6:15 GMT

    Good luck Tigers!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Vivek.Bhandari on June 14, 2010, 6:01 GMT

    It will be interesting to see how many people actually follow Asia Cup in the wake of FIFA WC 2010. However, the format is actually streamlined which is good to see...

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Vivek.Bhandari on June 14, 2010, 6:01 GMT

    It will be interesting to see how many people actually follow Asia Cup in the wake of FIFA WC 2010. However, the format is actually streamlined which is good to see...

  • sawn on June 14, 2010, 6:15 GMT

    Good luck Tigers!!!!!!!!!!!

  • 5860733 on June 14, 2010, 6:25 GMT

    PAk IS Great... PAkistAN ZinDABaad

  • on June 14, 2010, 6:40 GMT

    Well.. All the best to Asia Cup and ODIs especailly in Asia because I personally do not think that thi scup is going to attract audience which we used to have in Sharjah, Pakistan, India and sometimes in Sri Lanka too and this year i am damn sure the Sri Lanka crowd will prove me right and it has nothing to do with Football world cup. ODIs and tests are missing their spark and only ICC is to be blamed for that. These events are not being marketed as they should have been. Selection of places, lack of celebrities, lack of prize money, poor umpiring standards all are adding to the downfall of Cricket and this is the beginning of Cricket's Recession in Asia.

  • Rag-Aaron on June 14, 2010, 6:47 GMT

    Here we go again, people are saying the same things about ODIs that they said before the Champions Trophy in South Africa last year. Sometimes I think ideas gather force without much thought occurring as people just keep repeating things over and over like a mantra. "ODIs need to prove their relevance" and "the middle overs are boring" are my favourites.

    Last Years Champions Trophy was a great success and ODIs still receive miles more crowd support than Test Matches. Those ''boring overs' in the middle of an ODI innings are part of the ebb and flow of a match in which strategy is paramount and it seems really odd to hear journalists repeatedly failing to grasp these simple concepts.

    I'm not some die-hard fan of ODIs and wouldn't especially miss them if they died out but I bet the TV companies and advertisers would be a little alarmed to see the ODI suddenly dissappear. Yes there are too many meaningless ODI s in the schedule but there really is no need to panic just yet.

  • FarazSomjee on June 14, 2010, 7:11 GMT

    Srilanka is top favourite with the most balanced side and Indai ofcourse will be the second favourite. I would love to see Bangladesh and Pakistan (the two Asian underdogs) in the final.

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:15 GMT

    They are saying that with help of Asia Cup they promote cricket to other parts of Asia and help develop the game in continent which is really false. There is nothing called as 'cup' in Asia cup as it is almost like a tri-series involving a 4th team (Bangladesh) and has nothing else to do. Instead of compressing the calendar, we could do away with Asia Cup after 2011 as anyhow they will be taken part in next Asiads (Asian Games).

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:36 GMT

    india will win this time

  • on June 14, 2010, 7:36 GMT

    I don't think it will be a vital to expect the special occasions at the field as the very bed whether in Srilanka. D/L will be the player of this Asia cup.

  • ROLAYH on June 14, 2010, 7:42 GMT

    Sorry if it sounds rude....but Booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrring......

    I am not against the ODIs but this tournament looks useless and we can do without this on Calendar.... :)