Pakistan’s speed racer Shaheen Afridi in the match against India© AFP
India is scheduled to face Pakistan in the Asian Cup on August 28, and the biggest threat to the all-star Indian squad will once again be left-hander Shaheen Shah Afridi. It was Afridi who ruined India’s chances in last year’s T20 World Cup clash between arch-rivals when he eliminated opener Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul in a fiery time.
Pakistan’s top speedster, who was rated ICC Player of the Year in 2021, is currently sidelined with injury. Afridi missed Pakistan’s second Test against Sri Lanka due to a bruised knee and the team lost the match.
Before the team set off for the tour of the Netherlands and the Asian Cup, the captain Babar Azam was asked about Afridi’s fitness. He said that Shaheen is being taken to the Netherlands to be looked after by the team doctor for health and fitness and if possible there will be a match in the Netherlands to get ready for the Asian Cup.
“There are concerns about Shaheen’s fitness. We are taking him with us because the doctor and physical therapist are with the team, so he can be well taken care of. We are thinking from a long-term perspective. There are both Asian Cup and World Cup.
“We are trying to make sure he can be ready as soon as possible. We hope that he can play at least one game in the Netherlands. If not, then hopefully he can play in the Asian Cup,” Azam said.
It is likely that India and Pakistan will clash three times in the tournament and fans would love to see that happen.
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