India open their Asia Cup 2022 campaign against Pakistan and if they win, Rohit Sharma's side will equal Pak's record for most T20I wins in a year.
Team India's Asia Cup 2022 squad announcement was greeted with much fanfare as Virat Kohli and KL Rahu returned to the Indian team, while Jasprit Bumrah and Harshal Patel were ruled out due to injury. Rohit Sharma will lead the side, just like he did back in 2018 when India last won the Asia Cup.
However, a lot has changed since. Kohli has been off-the-pace recently and Rahul hasn't played an awful lot of cricket this year, due to his injury woes and Covid. For both of them, and for the Indian team as a whole, the tournament opener against Pakistan will be a stern test.
A meeting against Pakistan is anyways a huge occasion, and given the Men in Green's recent form, they are likely to give Rohit Sharma's side a tough fight. However, India will have a huge chance of matching Pakistan's incredible record in T20I cricket, if they can beat their arch-rivals in the Asia Cup 2022.
Babar Azam's side currently holds the record for having the most wins in the T20I format during a calendar year (20), which they achieved last year in 2021. However, Pakistan are also the second-most successful side when it comes to most T20I victories in one year.
Most wins in a calendar year by a team in T20I:— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) August 9, 2022
Pakistan - 20 wins (2021)
Pakistan - 17 wins (2018)
India - 16* wins (2022)
Another record is loading for Rohit Sharma & his men this year.
In 2018, Pakistan's record of 18 wins was enough to secure them a world record back then, which they themselves surpassed in 2021. India however, can become the second most successful team by overtaking Pakistan should they beat their neighbours twice during the Asia Cup 2022.
A win against Babar's side in their group-A clash on August 28, will see Rohit's men go level with Pakistan, and the two teams are most likely to face off again on September 4 if they finish in No. 1 and 2 positions in Group A, in a Super 4 clash.
A second victory over Pakistan would therefore make India the team with side highest number of wins in T20I format in a calendar year. The Men in Blue have won 16 T20Is so far in 2022. Moreover, if both India and Pakistan qualify for the final of the Asia Cup, then they would meet again on September 11.