The Cricket Pod: Virat Kohli-less India will be formidable in Asia Cup

We debut our new cricket podcast by previewing the Asia Cup with UAE cricketer Ahmed Raza and Hong Kong captain Anshuman Rath.

UAE cricketer Ahmed Raza joined The National's Paul Radley and Chitrabhanu Kadalayil in studio for the first episode of The Cricket Pod. Ravindranath / The National
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With our brand-new podcast, The Cricket Pod, we at The National seek to shine a spotlight on the "gentleman's game" every week, bringing to you the latest news, views, reviews and interviews from our studio in Abu Dhabi.

And there is no better way to start this new venture than by previewing a huge tournament right in the UAE: the Asia Cup. Listen to the first episode of The Cricket Pod here:

Hosts Chitrabhanu Kadalayil and Paul Radley are joined in the studio by UAE bowler Ahmed Raza, who also helped us interview Hong Kong captain Anshuman Rath about how his team might fare against heavyweights India and Pakistan.

Raza, named Player of the Tournament at the Asia Cup Qualifier in Malaysia even as the national side narrowly missed out on qualification, also talks about his experience of playing in the continent's flagship tournament – when the UAE featured in the last edition in Bangladesh two years ago.

We also preview Group B's Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka with staff writer Amith Passela. Which side do we think are favourites to make the final?

The Cricket Pod, produced by Kevin Jeffers, is the podcast from The National's sport desk. Find us on Audioboom or your favourite podcasting app. 

More on Asia Cup:

Amith Passela's interview with Charith Senanayake: Sri Lanka 'certain' Lasith Malinga will come good

Qualifier: Dougie Brown 'gutted' as UAE are forced to watch Asia Cup from the sidelines

Lowdown: Everything you need to know about the tournament to be held in the UAE

Indian cricket fans in UAE left disappointed by Virat Kohli's Asia Cup absence