There is big news coming in for the Asian cricket fans in general. The Asian Cricket Council has decided to organise Asia Cup this year.
This decision was taken in the Annual General Metting of the Council. According to reports, the tournament will be played in Sri Lanka and will start from 27th August onwards.
The tournament is making a return after almost four years. Asia Cup was last played in 2018. While it was due to be played in 2020, the pandemic situation disallowed that. Later the same problem posed a stymie in 2021.
Finally, we are all set to witness the tournament in 2022. Originally it was Pakistan that was to host the tournament this year. But due to some undisclosed reasons, it will now play host for the 2023 edition.
This is not the end of changes that will be witnessed this year, though.
What to expect from the Asia Cup
In opposition to the previous format of the Asia Cup, this year will feature a qualifier round.
The AGM concluded that the Qatar cricket association would be promoted to a full-time member from an associate member. Hence, they, too, shall be a part of the tournament.
However, they won’t get a direct ticket to the tournament. Instead, they will be required to play a playoff before the original game kicks off. In this playoff round, they will face UAE, Kuwait, Singapore and Hong Kong as their opponents.
The winner of this qualifier will get the birth of the sixth team in the tournament after India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan.
Initially played in the 50 over format, this time it will be played in 20 over form. This is only the second time after 2016 that this change will be implied. AGM took this decision considering the tournament’s proximity to the T20 World Cup.
Asia Cup has a long history of its own. It was first played in 1984, and since then, it has seen 13 editions. India has been dominant winning half of the tournaments. They are also the winners of the past two editions in 2016 and 2018. And will be looking to extend their winning run.