Asia Cup unique records
In the 2012 edition of the Asia Cup, Virat Kohli produced a batting display that remains in the memories of every cricket lover.

The Asia Cup 2023 is set to begin on Wednesday, August 30, with Pakistan taking on Nepal in the Group A opener. Notably, India are also drawn in the same group. Meanwhile, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka are placed in Group B. The 2023 Asia Cup is the 16th edition of the tournament, which started in 1984. Notably, two editions have been played in the 20-over format (2016 and 2022). The remainder of the tournament has been played in the 50-over format, and the 2023 edition is also following the same route. Over four decades since the tournament’s inception, there are several records that went on to make their way by individuals and teams alike. Ahead of the 2023 Asia Cup opening encounter, we present 10 major unique records held in the coveted tournament.

Jayasuriya and Sangakkara belong to an exclusive batting club

As per ESPNcricinfo, former Sri Lankan stalwarts Sanath Jayasuriya and Kumar Sangakkara are the only players to have scored 1000-plus runs in the Asia Cup (ODIs). From 1990-2008, Jayasuriya made 25 appearances in the Asia Cup, scoring 1220 runs at an average of 53.04. His average is the best among players with 20-plus matches. Meanwhile, Sangakkara managed 1075 runs at 48.86. 

Jayasuriya owns the most centuries in the Asia Cup with six tons under his belt. Meanwhile, Sangakkara owns the most 50-plus scores (12), having slammed four tons and 8 fifties. Jayasuriya has smashed the most fours in the Asia Cup (139) and has the second-highest number of sixes (23) after Shahid Afridi (26).

Lankan trio holds the fort in terms of wickets

Sri Lanka also see their players rule the roost in terms of bowling. Muttiah Muralitharan, Lasith Malinga, and Ajantha Mendis are the top three wicket-takers in Asia Cup history. Murali owns 30 scalps at 28.83. Malinga followed him with a tally of 29 scalps from 14 games at an excellent 20.55. Meanwhile, Mendis has 26 scalps from just eight matches at a brilliant 10.42. In fact, he has the best bowling average in the Asia Cup (5-plus matches).

Pakistan, India, and SL belong to 350-plus group

Pakistan hold the record for the highest score in an innings, amassing 385/7 against Bangladesh in the 2010 edition. India’s 374/4 versus Hong Kong in the 2008 edition and Sri Lanka’s 357/9 versus Bangladesh in 2008 are the top three totals, which are more than 350. Pakistan also lead the tally for most 300-plus totals (8). India have six 300-plus scores, whereas Sri Lanka have five such scores.

Bangladesh hold this unwanted record

Being bowled out for less than 100 often highlights a team’s collective batting failure as a unit. Notably, Bangladesh hold an unwanted record of three scores below 100, which is the highest for any team. Out of four scores below 100 in Asia Cup history, Bangladesh have three such totals, and Sri Lanka have one. Bangladesh’s score of 87 is the lowest in Asia Cup history, achieving the same against Pakistan in Dhaka in 2000. In 1986, Bangladesh posted 86/10 versus Pakistan, which remained the lowest score until 2000. Bangladesh also have the fourth-lowest score (99) versus India in Chattogram, 1998.

Kohli’s majestic 183 remains in its place

In the 2012 edition of the Asia Cup, Virat Kohli produced a batting display that remains in the memories of every cricket lover. He went on to smash a record-breaking 183 versus Pakistan as India chased down a target of 330. His 183 came from 148 balls as he smashed 22 fours and fours sixes. It remains the only individual score by a player which is in excess of 150. Pakistan’s then-skipper Misbah-ul-Haq described that innings as the best in ODI cricket.

When Jayasuriya dealt in 4s and 6s

In 2008, Jayasuriya spanked 130 runs versus Bangladesh in Karachi. He consumed 88 deliveries. However, Jayasuriya went on to get 100 of his runs in boundaries. He smashed 16 fours and six maximums in that knock. It remains the highest aggregate score in boundaries in an innings. Kohli’s 183 had 94 runs in boundaries.

Malinga holds this unique fifers record

Nine bowlers have managed to claim a fifer in the Asia Cup so far. Out of which, five Sri Lankan bowlers are present in the list. Malinga, who has the second-highest number of scalps in the Asia Cup, owns a unique record of three fifers, with the best show of 5/34. No other bowler besides Mendis has more than one fifer. Malinga also has one four-for in the tournament.

Mendis’ magic in the 2008 Asia Cup

In the 2008 Asia Cup, Sri Lankan spinner Mendis picked up 17 wickets. He is the only bowler with 15-plus wickets in a single edition of the tournament. Mendis claimed two fifers and a four-wicket haul. His total count of three is the highest for any bowler. Meanwhile, Mendis clocked an average of 8.52. It remains the best among bowlers with at least 10-plus wickets in an edition. Lastly, Mendis posted an economy rate of 3.45. It’s the best among bowlers with 10-plus scalps.

India and Pakistan boast these partnership records

A total of seven 200-plus stands have been stitched between players in the Asia Cup. However, it’s India and Pakistan who have dominated the same. Both nations have three 200-plus stands each in the Asia Cup. Nasir Jamshed and Mohammed Hafeez top the best stand tally with 224 runs against India. Younis Khan and Shoaib Malik’s 223-run stand remains the second-best. In the third position, Ajinkya Rahane and Kohli are present with a 213-run stand.

Captain’s corner

MS Dhoni and Arjuna Ranatunga have posted the most wins as captains in the Asia Cup (9). Misbah-ul-Haq remains the skipper with the best win percentage of 70% (at least 10 games). Pakistan’s Moin Khan has a 100% record as captain, having won all six games as a skipper.