Colombo (AFP): The 50-over Asia Cup in Sri Lanka and Pakistan entered the Super Four stage on Wednesday.

AFP Sport takes a snapshot of the tournament -- which comes a month before the ODI World Cup -- so far.


India-Pakistan washout
The hotly anticipated clash between fierce rivals India and Pakistan had to be abandoned because of rain at Pallekele.

Pakistan pace spearhead Shaheen Shah Afridi bowled a devastating first spell to put India on the backfoot before the batting team bounced back to post 266 all out.

But rain had the final say with players from both sides shaking hands in the dressing room and fans at the stadium -- largely from India -- returning home disappointed.

The two nations will meet again in Colombo in the Super Four stage on Sunday. Holders Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are also still involved.


Rain threat
The Sri Lankan rain refused to relent and threatened to wash out India's match against minnows Nepal, but the game at Pallekele had a result after a reduction of overs.

India chased down a revised target of 145 in 23 overs to win by 10 wickets with 17 balls to spare.

Rain in Colombo is still a threat to the tournament.

The September 17 final and all five remaining Super Four games after Wednesday are in the capital, where rain is forecast all week.

That had organisers plotting a venue shift as a contingency plan and some TV broadcast crews had already departed for the southern coastal city of Hambantota.

Organisers have decided to stick with Colombo -- at least for now.


Afghan miscalculation
The final group-stage match between Sri Lanka and Afghanistan in Lahore had plenty of drama before the island nation sneaked into the next stage with a two-run win.

Afghanistan believed they needed to chase down their target of 292 in 37.1 overs to lift their net run-rate enough to edge Sri Lanka out of the Super Four race.

Mohammad Nabi put the Afghans on course with 65 from 32 balls and Rashid Khan, 27 not out, nearly took them over the line before Sri Lanka's bowlers hit back with late strikes.

Afghanistan looked down and out at 289-9 in 37.1 overs, but analysts pointed out that they could still sneak through if they hit some big shots in the next six balls.

The batsmen, however, had no idea that was the case, and Fazalhaq Farooqi blocked the next two balls, before getting out on the third.

"We were never communicated (by the officials or organisers) those calculations," coach Jonathan Trott said afterwards.


Impressive Shaheen
Babar Azam's Pakistan came into the tournament as the world's number one ODI team and have played to their billing so far, with their fast bowlers looking extremely threatening.

Shaheen, a left-arm quick, and fellow quicks Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf were only warming up in the tournament opener when the hosts bundled out Nepal for 104, after Babar hit 151 in Pakistan's 342-6.

Against India, the Pakistani pace attack was once again all over the opposition, with Shaheen taking four and Naseem and Haris taking three wickets each.

Shaheen's wickets included the key scalps of Indian skipper Rohit Sharma and batting maestro Virat Kohli, marking the left-armer as a key threat in the latter stages of the tournament.