The cricketing rivalry in the sub-continent is set to begin with the Asia Cup which will for the first time will be held in the T20 format. This is the third consecutive time that the tournament will be held in Bangladesh. The tournament has seen some of the best bowling performances. Cricwizz takes a look at some of the best bowling performances in Asia Cup.
Ajantha Mendis’s 6/13 against India at Karachi in July 2008: Ajantha made a spectacular entry into international cricket, baffling batsmen, especially Indian cricketers, with his guile, spin and carrom ball. He made Indian players dance to his tune during the 2008 Asia Cup final, coming up with a haul of 6 wickets for just 13 runs in 8 overs. He claimed the top-order wickets of Virender Sehwag, Suresh Raina and Yuvraj Singh to break India’s backbone and help Sri Lanka win. He stole the Man of the Match award right under the nose of centurion Sanath Jayasuriya. Indian skipper MS Dhoni joked he might request Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene to lend Mendis for practice sessions.
Aaqib Javed’s 5/19 against India at Sharjah in 1995: During the 1995 Asia Cup match against India, Pakistan bowler Aaqib Javed came up with a match-winning spell of 5-19 to win the match for his team. Defending a score of 266, Javed got openers Manoj Prabhakar and Sachin Tendulkar for just 11 runs on the board to put Pakistan on the path to victory. He dismissed skipper Mohammad Azharuddin and Vinod Kambli cheaply to help Pakistan win the match.
Arshad Ayub’s 5/21 against Pakistan at Dhaka in 1988: Indian off-beak bowler Arshad Ayub bowled the spell of his life in ODI cricket when he scalped five wickets for 21 runs against Pakistan in the 1988 Asia Cup. Arshad provided the first breakthrough when he broke the opening partnership between Rameez Raja and Moin-ul-Atiq. He then returned to claim four middle-order wickets to trigger Pakistan’s collapse from 107/4 to 142 all out. It happened to be the only five-wicket haul of Ayub as India registered a 4-wicket win.
Lasith Malinga’s 5/34 against Pakistan at Dambulla in 2010: Defending a competitive score of 243, Sri Lanka made a great start as Lasith Malinga took two wickets for just 11 runs on the board. Pakistan made a great recovery through Shahid Afridi’s 109 as he took them to 205/6, 38 runs away from win. But Afridi’s dismissal at that juncture turned things around as Malinga came back to polish off the tail, picking the last three wickets. Sri Lanka stole a 16-run win…
Muttiah Muralitharan’s 5/31 against Bangladesh at Karachi in 2008: Sri Lanka has piled up a huge score of 332 for 8 with centuries from openers Sanath Jayasuriya and Kumar Sangakkara. Muralitharan then weaved his spell of magic to take Sri Lanka to victory. Bangladesh was going strong at 116/3 before Murali took three wickets to stall Bangladesh’s chase. He took two more wickets to come up with match figures of 5/31 as Sri Lanka won by 158 runs.