India and Bangladesh will kick-off the main round of the Asia Cup on February 24, but the weekend clashes may garner more attention. India and Pakistan play each other the following Saturday and hosts Bangladesh takes on Sri Lanka, the current title holders, on Sunday. The tournament will be played in Twenty20 format for the first time and all 11 matches including the final will be played at Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.
India and Pakistan, who last met on the cricket field at the World Cup in 2015, are now set to play each other twice in three weeks: after their February 27 match in the Asia Cup, they have a World T20 match on March 19. It could be thrice in three weeks if both teams compete against each other in the final of the Asia Cup on March 6.
While the tournament was played in an ODI format, Sri Lanka have been the most prolific team in the tournament's history. They have won 34 of 48 matches played and took the trophy home five times.
Besides the four major nations, Afghanistan, Oman, Hong Kong and UAE will be playing a qualifying tournament that starts on February 19. Each team will play three matches and the one that finishes on top will advance to the main event. In case two teams finish with the same points, their net run rates will be used as tiebreaker.