We finally have it- after 13 power-packed games over a span of a fortnight, we have India defending their title as the champions of Asia and clinching the silverware for a record 7th time. The team did start out as a strong contender, but there were many who were wary of the defending champions' chances in the absence of talismanic skipper Virat Kohli.
India did manage to win the title due to their subtle team balance and coordination of all three departments. At the same time, there were many other teams who made a statement, while Bangladesh announced their graduation in world cricket, by almost holding India in a nerve-wracking final.
We have a look at the XI which can take on Asian champions India :
Mohammad Shahzad (Wicketkeeper- Afghanistan)
Shahzad got off to good starts during the initial half and started converting them into big score towards the business end of the tournament. Popularly called as MS, he contributed with a half-century in the game against Bangladesh and was blitz in the thriller against India, as he ripped apart the young Indian bowlers. Shahzad scored a blistering hundred in the tie against India, and scored the chunk of his team's score, bagging the Man of the Match honours.
He ended up as the highest run scorer for the Afghans, with 268 runs in 5 matches. Despite his substantial frame, he did justice to his job behind the stumps as well, due to which he has been handed the glovework duties in the tournament.
The 22-year-old batsman was the amongst the very few positives for Pakistan in the tournament, as they failed miserably as a unit. ul-Haq was the only batsman from the much buzzed top order of Pakistan, notching half-centuries in three games. While his advances were kept under check by the Indian bowlers, he batted beautifully in the remaining games.
The southpaw kept fighting a lone battle in the virtual semi-final clash against Bangladesh, as he failed to solicit support from the other players. He ended up as the highest run scorer for his country, with 225 runs in his 5 games.