Asia Cup: India face Hong Kong before Pakistan clash

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DUBAI, September 17: A formidable India will be aiming to make short work of minnows Hong Kong in their Asia Cup opener Tuesday before getting battle-ready for their much-anticipated clash against arch-rivals Pakistan on Wednesday.
The match against Hong Kong will be an ‘appetiser’ before cricket junkies are treated to a lavish spread of main course which will be the Indo-Pak rivalry.
Even without regular skipper Virat Kohli, the Indian side, led by Rohit Sharma, is an intimidating one in the limited-overs format.
Although Rohit and his colleagues won’t want to take Hong Kong lightly, in reality the match will only be a pre-cursor or a glorified dress rehearsal before they take on an in-form Pakistan the very next day.
In the searing Dubai heat, where the mercury has risen up to 43 degree Celsius, the primary aim for the Men in Blue would be to get their combination right before the big game.
Hong Kong lost their opener against Pakistan by eight wickets in a thoroughly one-sided showdown where they could manage only 116 runs.
Unless a miracle happens, there won’t be a remarkable improvement in their performance against an Indian team that boasts of the likes of Rohit, Shikhar Dhawan, KL Rahul, Kedar Jadhav in batting along with Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal in bowling. (PTI)