With record-time winners Team India set to square off against Sri Lanka in the final of the Asia Cup 2023, legendary cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has lauded an Indian star who he believes can make a difference in the summit clash. World Cup hosts India will look to snap their trophyless run against Sri Lanka in the final of the Asia Cup on Sunday. Rohit Sharma’s Team India has struggled to win silverware in multi-nation tournaments since 2018.
The two-time world champions last lifted the continental title in the 2018 edition of the showpiece event. In the lead-up to the showdown clash with the defending champions, India suffered an injury setback in the form of Axar Patel, who was ruled out of the final on Saturday. Bowling all-rounder Axar will miss the Asia Cup 2023 final due to a hamstring injury. In the absence of spinner Axar, an in-form Kuldeep Yadav will continue to lead the spin-bowling attack of the Men In Blue.
‘Kuldeep has shown that he can make a difference’
Speaking to India Today ahead of the Asia Cup final, batting legend Gavaskar lauded Kuldeep for being the wrecker-in-chief in the continental tournament. “Kuldeep has shown that he can make a difference. Wrist spin, whether it is right-arm of left-arm, can get you wickets. And wickets are the best dot balls in limited-overs cricket. Also, the fact that he is bowling a little flatter, not giving that much air, getting the ball to spin, makes him difficult to play,” Gavaskar was quoted as saying on the eve of the Asia Cup final.
Kuldeep is India’s leading wicket-taker at Asia Cup
India’s leading wicket-taker in the Asia Cup 2023, Kuldeep has picked up 9 wickets in four games. The spinner bagged a memorable five-wicket haul in India’s massive win over Pakistan. The 29-year-old scalped four wickets in the thrilling Super 4 encounter between India and Sri Lanka. When India last met Sri Lanka in the Super 4 stage of the Asia Cup 2023, youngster Danith Wellalage triggered a batting collapse of the Men In Blue.
Gavaskar has shared a piece of advice for Team India’s world-class batting order. “I think they would try and get to the pitch of the ball as quickly as possible. It’s not an easy wicket to always toss the ball up. But every time he gives the ball a little bit of air, drive him with quick footwork. Unless the pitch is flat and there is not much turn, don’t look to loft him. Make him think,” Gavaskar added.