U19 Asia Cup 2018 Final: India vs Sri Lanka | Preview and Predicted Playing XI
Sri Lanka will be looking to claim their first-ever Asia Cup U19 title when they face India in the final of ACC U19 Asia Cup 2018 at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka on Sunday, October 7.
They will be going head-to-head for the fourth time in an Asia Cup final, with the Indians coming out victorious on all occasions, and once again are favourites to hold the trophy.
In their previous clash during 2016 edition, the Men in Blue inflicted a 37-run defeat on Sri Lanka. After opting to bat first, India posted 273 runs on the board, thanks to incredible batting performances by Prithvi Shaw (39), Shubham Gill (70) and Rana (71), and then wrapped up Islanders at 239 due to skipper Abhishek Sharma (4/37) splendid bowling efforts, who was later adjudged Man of the Match for his all-around performance in final.
Now, both teams find themselves in another title clash as they aim to be U19 Asian champions. So one may expect both teams to come out blazing in order to get their hands on prestigious trophy.
After winning all group stage matches of the tournament in a row, they faced Bangladesh in semifinal which India won by 2 runs in a nail-biting finish. India have had comprehensive victories in their remaining three matches and despite the middle order chinks, they are expected to successfully carry out their title defence.
Batting: The opening pair of Devdutt Padikkal and Yashasvi Jaiswal hold the key to India's batting. Both these batsmen have shown sublime form in this Asia Cup and they are expected to take the U19's off to yet another solid start. Yashasvi is leading the runs charts with 233 runs and Devdutt follows him with 152 runs.
Indians will also bank on the likes of Anuj Rawat, Ayush Badoni and skipper Pawan Shah, who have also chipped in with fine contributions. Their only concern will be Prabhsimran Singh, who is not looking in the best of form and was out on a duck against tigers. The wicketkeeper-batsman must put up a strong to make a c India to another final.
Bowling: Siddharth Desai is the best bowler in the tournament with 16 wickets in four matches and he is likely to rattle Islanders top-order early on. Harsh Tyagi also proved his worth throughout the tournament having picked up eight wickets. While Mohit Jangra, whi picked up three wickets in semifinal clash against Bangladesh is expected to replicate his performance.
Expected Playing XI: Pavan Shah (C), Anuj Rawat, Yashasvi Jaiswal, Pavan Shah, Devdutt Padikkal, Mohit Jangra, Sabir Khan, Sameer Choudhary, PrabhSimran Singh, Harsh Tyagi, Ayush Badoni and Siddharth Desai.
Sri Lanka U-19
Sri Lankan team started their Asia Cup with an impressive six-wicket victory over Nepal. In the next two games, Lankan boys dismantled both Hong Kong and Pakistan and won those games by 10 wickets and 23 runs respectively. Then went on to beat Afghanistan in semifinal by 31 runs.
Batting: The Sri Lankan batting has not been tested throughout the group stage, but proved their worth in semifinal against Afghanistan. The openers Navod Paranavithana and Nishan Madushka failed to provide start Nuwanidu Fernando went on to score a much needed century for the hosts and was well supported by other middle order batsmen. The team might have got a much needed boost ahead of Final and will expect him to replicate it in final as well.
The Islanders will also bank on the likes of Naveen Nirmal Fernando, who also chipped in with fine contributions. While skipper Nipun Dhananjaya, also got his lost form back against Afghanistan and will be eager to produce another one and guide Lanka to U19 title.
Bowling: Shasnika Dulhan is Islanders best bowler in the tournament with eleven wickets in three matches and was also their star performer against Afghanistan with impressive figures of 4/24. The young pacer is likely to rattle India's top-order early on. Dulith Wellalage and Kalhara Senaratne have also proved their worth throughout the tournament having picked up six and five wickets respectively and these two will be the skipper's go-to bowlers in the middle overs.
Expected Playing XI: Nipun Dhananjaya (C), Navod Paranavithana, Nishan Madushka, Kalana Perera, Pasindu Sooriyabandara or Kamil Mishara, Kalhara Senarathne, Nuwanidu Fernando, Shashika Dulshan, Dulith Wellalage, Naveen Nirmal Fernando and Sandun Mendis.