India and Sri Lanka are set to clash in the Asia Cup 2023 final tomorrow, scheduled to be held at Colombo's R Premadasa Stadium.
Despite being the defending champions and co-hosts, Sri Lanka initially weren't seen as favorites to reach the final but their remarkable performances shattered the hopes of many India-Pakistan fans who were eagerly anticipating the first-ever Asia Cup final between the two arch-rivals.
The main concern looming over the match is the potential disruption by the rain in Sri Lanka. Recent weather forecasts indicate a high likelihood of a 90% chance of rainfall in Colombo on the match day.
In case the match gets called off due to rain, the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) has made provisions for a Reserve Day on Monday, September 18. Still, there's still the possibility of rain even on this backup day, which could ultimately lead to India and Sri Lanka being declared joint champions.
In terms of player injuries, both India and Sri Lanka face significant challenges ahead of the grand finale on Sunday. Axar Patel is expected to sit out of the final due to an injury he sustained during the match against Bangladesh, with Washington Sundar lined up as his replacement.
Sri Lanka is also grappling with injury concerns as their leading wicket-taker of the year, off-spinner Maheesh Theekshana, will not be able to participate in the final due to a strained right hamstring.
Here are the anticipated lineups for both teams:
India's likely XI: Rohit Sharma(c), Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, KL Rahul(wk), Ishan Kishan, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj.
Sri Lanka's likely XI: Pathum Nissanka, Kusal Perera, Kusal Mendis (wk), Sadeera Samarawickrama, Charith Asalanka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka(c), Dunith Wellalage, Dushan Hemantha, Matheesha Pathirana, and Pramod Madushan.