India's journey in the Asia Cup has ended for all practical purposes. Sunday's one-wicket defeat against Pakistan has effectively shut the door on the current world champions. (India vs Pakistan highlights)
Saturday's final looks like a Sri Lanka versus Pakistan affair. However, Bangladesh can make it if they beat both Sri Lanka and Pakistan with bonus points. The Lankans guaranteed themselves of a place in the title round with a massive 129-run win over tournament debutants Afghanistan in Mirpur on Monday. (Sri Lanka vs Afghanistan highlights)
Four-time Asia Cup winners Sri Lanka have 13 points from three wins, including one with a bonus point. (Points Table)
Pakistan (9 points from 3 matches) must beat Bangladesh (no points from 2 matches) on Tuesday to enter the final. Even if Virat Kohli's India beat Afghanistan on Wednesday and secure a bonus point, they will finish with a maximum of 9 points but will pay the penalty of losing to arch-rivals Pakistan.
According to the tournament playing conditions, in the event of teams finishing on equal points, the right to play in the final are determined on these factors:
1)Â Â Â Â Â The team with the most number of wins.
2)Â Â Â Â Â If the teams have equal number of points, the team with the better head-to-head record over the team that has the same number of wins advances.
3)Â Â Â Â Â If the teams are still equal, then the side with higher number of bonus-point wins go through.
4)Â Â Â Â Â If the teams are still equal, the team with the highest net-run-rate will proceed to the title round.
India will lose out to Pakistan on head-to-head count (point No. 2), meaning the Men in Blue will fail to enter the summit clash of the continental tourney for the second time running. India last won the Asia Cup title nearly four years ago when MS Dhoni and his men beat Sri Lanka by 81 runs in the final at Dambulla on June 24, 2010.
India entered the Asia Cup without registering a win on the tours to South Africa and New Zealand. Their only win across all formats since December 2013 came against Bangladesh when Virat Kohli's 19th ODI hundred took India to a six-wicket victory earlier in the tournament.