Get ready, cricket enthusiasts! The much-awaited Asia Cup 2023 has kicked off, and the excitement is through the roof. The 16th edition of the ODI tournament is all set to bring together some of the best cricketing nations in a clash of skills and strategies.
The 2023 Asia Cup, also known as the Super 11 Asia Cup for sponsorship reasons, is jointly hosted by Pakistan and Sri Lanka, bringing together six teams in a thrilling battle of One Day Internationals (ODIs).
Let’s dive into the action-packed details of the Asia Cup 2023 – from the teams on the field to the venues that’ll witness history in the making. Stick around as this blog breaks down the format, squads, and much more in this ultimate guide to the Asia Cup 2023!
Hosts of Asia Cup 2023
Pakistan and Sri Lanka share the honour of jointly hosting the 2023 Asia Cup. Both cricket-loving nations have opened their arms to welcome teams from Asia, setting the stage for a cricketing carnival that transcends borders.
The tournament’s hybrid format takes the spirit of collaboration to new heights, as matches are scheduled to be played in both countries, highlighting the unifying power of cricket.
Dates: 30 August – 17 September 2023
The excitement and anticipation reached its peak as the 2023 Asia Cup kicked off on 30th August 2023. The tournament will conclude on 17th September 2023, culminating in a grand finale that will crown the cricketing champions of Asia.
ACC Asia Cup: Celebrating Champions Across Eras
The ACC Asia Cup, a cricketing extravaganza that has graced the sport for decades, has witnessed the rise of cricketing giants and the crowning of champions. Here, readers can take a look at the winners of this prestigious tournament, spanning its rich history from its inception to the present day.
|1997||ODI||Sri Lanka (2)|
|2004||ODI||Sri Lanka (3)|
|2008||ODI||Sri Lanka (4)|
|2014||ODI||Sri Lanka (5)|
|2022||T20I||Sri Lanka (6)|
|2023||ODI||To be decided|
Overview and History of the Asia Cup
The Asia Cup, officially referred to as the ACC Men’s Asia Cup or ACC Cup, is a significant international cricket tournament for men, pitting Asian nations against each other in both One Day International (50 overs) and Twenty20 International (20 overs) cricket formats.
Started in 1983, it emerged with the founding of the Asian Cricket Council, aiming to foster camaraderie among Asian countries through cricket. Originally slated for biennial occurrences, the Asia Cup serves as the sole continental championship in cricket, with the victorious team earning the prestigious title of Asia’s champion. The tournament oscillates between ODI and T20I formats every two years.
The inaugural Asia Cup took place in 1984 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates, where the council was headquartered until 1995. In 1986, India boycotted the event due to strained cricket relations with Sri Lanka. Similarly, the 1990–91 edition saw Pakistan’s boycott owing to tense political ties with India, and the 1993 edition was cancelled for the same reason.
In 2009, the ACC declared that the tournament would occur biennially. Notably, all matches played in the Asia Cup hold official ODI status, as decreed by the ICC.
Following a reduction in the role of the Asian Cricket Council in 2015, the ICC announced a rotational approach for Asia Cup events starting from 2016, alternating between the ODI and T20I formats, in alignment with upcoming world cricket events. Consequently, the 2016 Asia Cup was the pioneering instance of the T20I format and served as preparation for the 2016 ICC World Twenty20.
India leads the championship’s tally with seven titles (six in ODI and one in T20I), establishing its supremacy. Sri Lanka trails closely with six titles, while Pakistan clinched victory twice. In terms of participation, Sri Lanka boasts the highest number of appearances (15), followed by India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, each with 14 appearances.
The Tournament’s Journey: Asia Cup 2023
The journey to the 2023 Asia Cup hasn’t been without its twists and turns. From venue changes to teams’ qualification routes, it’s a story of resilience and adaptability.
A Historic Hybrid Format
For the first time, the tournament adopted a “hybrid format.” While the majority of the teams will be playing in Pakistan, India opted to play its matches in Sri Lanka due to political considerations. The unprecedented approach reflects cricket’s ability to bridge geographical and political boundaries.
Pathway and Calendar: Asia Cup 2023
In January 2023, the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) announced the pathway structure and calendar for 2023 and 2024, clarifying the dates and format of the tournament. The fixtures were eagerly anticipated by fans and players alike, setting the stage for an unforgettable showdown.
The Battle of Titans
The participating teams encompass a mix of full members of the Asian Cricket Council and those earned the spots through qualification. Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka were automatically qualified, while Nepal secured its place by winning the 2023 ACC Men’s Premier Cup.
Format and Structure
The tournament structure is divided into two groups, each featuring three teams. The top two teams from each group will advance to the Super 4 stage, creating a thrilling spectacle for fans. It leads to the climactic final where the top two teams from the Super 4 will compete for ultimate glory.
The tournament unfolds across four venues, each with its unique charm and ambiance:
- Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore, Pakistan: Capacity of 27,000
- Multan Cricket Stadium, Multan, Pakistan: Capacity of 30,000
- R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo, Sri Lanka: Capacity of 35,000
- Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Kandy, Sri Lanka: Capacity of 35,000
Countdown to Glory
As the cricket world counts down to the 2023 Asia Cup, anticipation and excitement are reaching a crescendo. The tournament is not just about cricket; it’s a celebration of unity, sportsmanship, and the shared love for the game. With the finest teams, spectacular venues, and passionate fans, the Asia Cup promises to be an unforgettable cricketing spectacle.
Squads of Asia Cup 2023
The squads for the 2023 Asia Cup are nothing short of a cricketing dream. Let’s take a look at the star-studded line-ups of each participating nation:
Pakistan’s team is led by the charismatic Babar Azam, who has consistently demonstrated his batting prowess. With Shadab Khan as the vice-captain, the team includes names like Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Rizwan, and the fiery Shaheen Afridi, creating a formidable force on the field.
Under the leadership of Rohit Sharma, India’s squad is a mix of experienced veterans and young talents. Virat Kohli, Jasprit Bumrah, and Hardik Pandya bring their exceptional skills to the table, while the promising Shubman Gill and Ishan Kishan add a touch of youthful exuberance.
Shakib Al Hasan leads Bangladesh’s charge, supported by players like Mushfiqur Rahim, and Mustafizur Rahman. With a blend of seasoned campaigners and emerging stars, Bangladesh aims to make its mark in the tournament.
As the defending champions, Sri Lanka is determined to retain its title. Dasun Shanaka captains the team, backed by the likes of Kusal Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva, and the spin wizard Wanindu Hasaranga. The team’s balance is its strength.
Afghanistan, a rising force in world cricket, features stars like Rashid Khan, Mohammad Nabi, and the explosive Rahmanullah Gurbaz. Under Hashmatullah Shahidi’s captaincy, they are poised to showcase their skills on the big stage.
Making its debut in the Asia Cup, Nepal boasts an enthusiastic squad. The young team includes names like Dipendra Singh Airee, Kushal Bhurtel, and Sandeep Lamichhane, aiming to create waves with their performance.
|Hashmatullah Shahidi (c)||Shakib Al Hasan (c)||Rohit Sharma (c)||Rohit Paudel (c)||Babar Azam (c)||Dasun Shanaka (c)|
|Rahmanullah Gurbaz (wk)||Litton Das||Hardik Pandya (vc)||Aasif Sheikh (wk)||Shadab Khan (vc)||Kusal Mendis (vc, wk)|
|Ibrahim Zadran||Anamul Haque||Jasprit Bumrah||Dipendra Singh Airee||Mohammad Rizwan (wk)||Pathum Nissanka|
|Riaz Hassan||Tanzid Hasan||Shubman Gill||Kushal Bhurtel||Abdullah Shafique||Dimuth Karunaratne|
|Rahmat Shah||Najmul Hossain Shanto||Shreyas Iyer||Mousom Dhakal||Faheem Ashraf||Kusal Perera|
|Najibullah Zadran||Towhid Hridoy||Ravindra Jadeja||Pratis GC||Fakhar Zaman||Charith Asalanka|
|Mohammad Nabi||Mushfiqur Rahim (wk)||Ishan Kishan (wk)||Gulsan Jha||Haris Rauf||Dhananjaya de Silva|
|Ikram Alikhil (wk)||Mehidy Hasan||Prasidh Krishna||Sundeep Jora||Imam-ul-Haq||Sadeera Samarawickrama|
|Rashid Khan||Taskin Ahmed||Virat Kohli||Karan KC||Iftikhar Ahmed||Maheesh Theekshana|
|Gulbadin Naib||Mustafizur Rahman||Axar Patel||Sompal Kami||Mohammad Haris||Dunith Wellalage|
|Karim Janat||Hasan Mahmud||KL Rahul||Sandeep Lamichhane||Mohammad Nawaz||Matheesha Pathirana|
|Abdul Rahman||Mahedi Hasan||Mohammed Shami||Kishor Mahato||Mohammad Wasim||Kasun Rajitha|
|Sharafuddin Ashraf||Nasum Ahmed||Mohammed Siraj||Kushal Malla||Naseem Shah||Dushan Hemantha|
|Mujeeb Ur Rahman||Shamim Hossain||Shardul Thakur||Lalit Rajbanshi||Saud Shakeel||Binura Fernando|
|Noor Ahmad||Ebadot Hossain||Tilak Varma||Arjun Saud (wk)||Salman Ali Agha||Pramod Madushan|
|Fazalhaq Farooqi||Afif Hossain||Kuldeep Yadav||Bhim Sharki||Shaheen Afridi|
|Shakib Al Hasan (c)||Shoriful Islam||Suryakumar Yadav||Usama Mir|
Fixtures of Asia Cup 2023
The cricket stadiums in Pakistan will host the matches. The fixtures for the 2023 Asia Cup are as follows:
- Pakistan vs. Nepal on August 30, 2023, at Multan Cricket Stadium, Multan
- India vs. Pakistan on September 2, 2023, at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Kandy
- Nepal vs. India on September 4, 2023, at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Kandy
- Bangladesh vs. Sri Lanka on August 31, 2023, at Pallekele International Cricket Stadium, Kandy
- Afghanistan vs. Bangladesh on September 3, 2023, at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
- Afghanistan vs. Sri Lanka on September 5, 2023, at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
- A1 vs. B2 on September 6, 2023, at Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
- B1 vs. B2 on September 9, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
- A1 vs. A2 on September 10, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
- A2 vs. B1 on September 12, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
- A1 vs. B1 on September 14, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
- A2 vs. B2 on September 15, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
- Super 4s-1 vs. Super 4s-2 on September 17, 2023, at R. Premadasa Stadium, Colombo
The 2023 Asia Cup promises many exciting matches, showcasing the skills and determination of these cricketing nations. Fans can expect high-intensity clashes, unexpected twists, and moments that will be etched in cricketing history. As the tournament unfolds, the world will witness the convergence of talent, teamwork, and sportsmanship on the cricket field.
Match Referees of Asia Cup 2023
- David Boon (Australia): With his vast cricketing experience, David Boon brings his expertise to ensure that the matches are conducted in a disciplined and fair manner.
- Javagal Srinath (India): A former cricketer himself, Javagal Srinath now takes on the responsibility of overseeing the conduct of matches, ensuring that the rules are adhered to.
- Ahmed Shah Pakteen (Afghanistan): Representing Afghanistan, Ahmed Shah Pakteen will be one of the umpires responsible for making crucial decisions on the field.
- Paul Wilson (Australia): From Australia, Paul Wilson joins the team of umpires, ready to make accurate judgments during intense moments of play.
- Masudur Rahman (Bangladesh): Masudur Rahman brings his expertise from Bangladesh, contributing to the fair and smooth flow of the matches.
- Richard Illingworth (England): With his English charm, Richard Illingworth steps onto the field to ensure that the matches are played within the spirit of the game.
- Jayaraman Madanagopal (India): Representing India, Jayaraman Madanagopal will be focused on making precise decisions that impact the outcome of the matches.
- Chris Gaffaney (New Zealand): From New Zealand, Chris Gaffaney joins the team of umpires, ready to officiate the matches with precision.
- Asif Yaqoob (Pakistan): Asif Yaqoob from Pakistan will take on the responsibility of being an umpire, making important calls during the matches.
- Ruchira Palliyaguruge (Sri Lanka): Representing Sri Lanka, Ruchira Palliyaguruge joins the team of umpires, ensuring that the matches are played fairly.
- Langton Rusere (Zimbabwe): Zimbabwe’s Langton Rusere will contribute to the smooth conduct of matches as one of the umpires.
Ensuring Fair Play
The match officials are the custodians of fair play, and their decisions have a significant impact on the outcome of the matches. As the 2023 Asia Cup unfolds, the officials will be working tirelessly to ensure that the rules are followed, controversies are minimised, and the true spirit of cricket is upheld.
So, when you’re watching the matches, remember to appreciate the efforts of these unsung heroes who work behind the scenes to make the game enjoyable for all.
FAQs about Asia Cup 2023
What is the format of the 2023 Asia Cup?
The 2023 Asia Cup features matches played in the One Day International (ODI) format. This means that the participating teams will compete in traditional 50-over matches, showcasing their skills and strategies over a longer cricketing period compared to the T20 format.
Why is India playing its matches in Sri Lanka?
The decision for India to play its matches in Sri Lanka instead of Pakistan stems from complex political considerations. Concerns about security and diplomatic relations between India and Pakistan influenced this choice. By opting for matches in Sri Lanka, India aims to ensure the safety of its players and uphold its stance on cross-border relations.
Which teams automatically qualified for the tournament?
The 2023 Asia Cup welcomes five full members of the Asian Cricket Council – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka – as automatic qualifiers for the tournament. These cricketing powerhouses have earned their spots based on their standing and contribution to the world of cricket.
What is the significance of the “hybrid format”?
The “hybrid format” of the 2023 Asia Cup is a testament to cricket’s ability to transcend geographical boundaries. This format showcases the tournament’s diversity and inclusivity by organising matches in two different countries – Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The blend of cultures, environments, and fanbases adds a unique flavour to the competition, making it an unforgettable experience for players and spectators alike.
When was the tournament originally scheduled, and why was it postponed?
Originally slated for 2021, the 2023 Asia Cup underwent a postponement due to unprecedented global circumstances. The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic led to the suspension of various sporting events, including cricket tournaments. With the safety and well-being of players and fans as the top priority, the tournament was rescheduled to 2023, allowing time for the situation to stabilise and for cricket to resume its full glory.
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