The ACC Asia Cup is a limited-overs cup competition and the only continental tournament in cricket.

Originally scheduled to be held every two years, the Asia Cup has undergone several changes in its format as more Asian teams rose to prominence. In the first two editions - in 1984 and 1986 - the Asia Cup was played between just three countries; India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

Bangladesh made their first appearance in 1986 and the 2004 edition saw six teams taking part in the competition.

Each of the first 12 editions were played in the One Day International (ODI) format. In 2016, it was confirmed that the format of the event would rotate between ODIs and Twenty20. 

The first-ever Asia Cup in the T20 format was played in 2016. India defeated hosts Bangladesh in a thriller by eight wickets.

India are the most successful team in the Asia Cup cricket history. They won the inaugural edition in 1984 and are also the defending champions. Overall, the Indian cricket team has won the continental championship seven times (six ODI and one T20I).

Asia Cup records


Most runs: Former Sri Lanka captain Sanath Jayasuriya has scored the most runs in the Asia Cup history. The southpaw played 25 matches in the competition and scored 1220 runs at an average of 53.04 in the competition. During this time, he scored six centuries and three half-centuries.

Most wickets: Sri Lanka great Muttiah Muralitharan holds the record for most wickets in the Asia Cup ODI history. The legendary spinner picked 30 wickets in 24 matches at an excellent economy of 3.75. 

Highest individual score: Former Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli scored 183 runs against Pakistan during the 2012 edition, which to date, remains the highest individual score in the Asia Cup.

Best bowling figures: In 2008, Ajantha Mendis ended scalped 6/13 which helped Sri Lanka beat India in the final. These are still the best bowling figures in the Asia Cup.

Highest team total: In 2010, Pakistan rode on Shahid Afridi’s 60-ball 124 to post 385/7 against Pakistan, which is the highest team total in the Asia Cup.

Lowest team total: The record for the lowest team total in Asia Cup belongs to Bangladesh, who were restricted to 87 in 34.2 overs by Pakistan in 2000. 


Most runs: Hong Kong’s Babar Hayat has scored the most runs in the Asia Cup in the T20 format. The 30-year-old has so far tallied 194 runs in three matches at 64.66.

Most wickets: UAE’s Amjad Javed, with 12 wickets, is currently the leading wicket-taker in the Asia Cup in the shortest format. His strike rate is 11.5.

Highest individual score: Excluding the qualifier rounds, the record for highest individual score in Asia Cup belongs to India’s Rohit Sharma, who scored 83 runs against Bangladesh during the 2016 edition. 

Best bowling figure: Barring the qualifying rounds once again, Sri Lanka’s Lasith Malinga recorded the best bowling figures in the Asia Cup in T20I when he ended with 4/26 against the UAE.

Highest team total: In the same match where Rohit Sharma scored 83 runs against Bangladesh, India posted the highest team total in Asia Cup when they registered 166/6 in 20 overs (excluding qualifiers).

Lowest team total: The ninth match of the 2016 Asia Cup saw India bundling the UAE for just 81/9. This is, to date, the lowest team total in T20I in the competition’s history.

Featured photo: AFP / Ishara S. Kodikara