Winner: Sri Lanka

Pepsi Asia Cup, 1997-98

Sa'adi Thawfeeq

World Cup holders Sri Lanka added the Asia Cup to their growing list of one-day titles when they ended India's stranglehold on the competition in comprehensive fashion. India had won four of the five previous Asia Cups; Sri Lanka won in 1985-86, the last time they hosted it, but on that occasion India had withdrawn. This time the Indians were thoroughly outplayed by Arjuna Ranatunga's men, who won the final with more than 13 overs to spare. Sri Lanka went through the tournament with a 100 per cent record, beating India twice, Pakistan and Bangladesh. They were led admirably by Ranatunga, referred to as Captain Cool by ICC referee John Reid; with an aggregate of 272 runs for only two dismissals, he was named Man of the Series. The key to Sri Lanka's success was their fitness, demonstrated in some spectacular fielding. Pakistan's disappointing record in the Asia Cup continued; they bowed out when India pushed past them on net run-rate, hitting the Bangladeshi attack for 132 in 15 overs. Bangladesh, who qualified as the fourth team through winning the Asian Cricket Council tournament, failed to win a single game.

Match reports for

1st Match: Sri Lanka v Pakistan at Colombo (RPS), Jul 14, 1997
Scorecard

2nd Match: Bangladesh v Pakistan at Colombo (RPS), Jul 16, 1997
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3rd Match: Sri Lanka v India at Colombo (RPS), Jul 18, 1997
Scorecard

4th Match: India v Pakistan at Colombo (SSC), Jul 20, 1997
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4th Match: India v Pakistan at Colombo (SSC), Jul 21, 1997
Scorecard

5th Match: Sri Lanka v Bangladesh at Colombo (SSC), Jul 22, 1997
Scorecard

6th Match: Bangladesh v India at Colombo (SSC), Jul 24, 1997
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Final: Sri Lanka v India at Colombo (RPS), Jul 26, 1997
Scorecard

© John Wisden & Co