Dubai, August 30: India will take on Hong Kong on Wednesday (August 31) with an eye on sealing a berth in the Asia Cup 2022 Super 4.
Hong Kong is a rare opponent for India in international cricket as they are still an associate nation and they get to play the big boys only if they qualify for the global tournaments conducted by the ICC or ACC.
So much so that, India have played Hong Kong only once in international cricket, incidentally in the Asia Cup when it was held in Karachi in 2008.
Here’s a recap to that match.
1 India bats first
After winning the toss, India captain MS Dhoni decided to bat first. Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir opened the innings for India and the former was in fine touch as the Men in Blue raced off the block. Sehwag hammered a 44-ball 78 and Gambhir made a rather sedate 54-ball 51 as India reached 127 in the 15th over. HK bowler Najeeb Amar dismissed both the openers in quick succession and Rohit Sharma soon got run out as India lost three wickets.
But Dhoni (109 not out off 96 balls, 6x4, 6x6) and Suresh Raina (101, 68 balls, 7x4, 5x6) hammered the Hong Kong bowlers around as India rattled 374 for 4 in 50 overs.
2 HK batters falter
Once India made a total as imposing as 374, Hong Kong never stood a chance but you might have expected them to reduce the margin of defeat with a spirited batting effort. But there was none. They lost wickets at regular intervals and could not handle the leg-spin of Piyush Chawla, who bagged 4 wickets conceding 23 runs in 10 overs. Sehwag bagged the last two HK wickets as they were bowled out for 118 and India emerged winner by a massive 256 runs.
Rohit Sharma, who made his international debut in 2007, is the only surviving member from that team as all others have retired from top-flight cricket and Robin Uthappa is still active in domestic cricket. In the 14 years since, Rohit has seen many ups and downs in his career and is currently the India captain in all three formats, succeeding Virat Kohli.