Sparks generally fly when India take on Pakistan in cricket, and Wednesday’s Asia Cup clash in Dubai will be an emotionally charged fixture as always.
This is the first time the two teams will be clashing after Pakistan thrashed India by 180 runs in the Champions Trophy final in June 2017.
As we await Wednesday’s match, here is a good way to get warmed up for India versus Pakistan. Here are five of their most memorable previous encounters:
One of India’s greatest wins over their arch-rivals was sculpted by a scintillating batting display from Sachin Tendulkar, who helped his team chase down 274 with ease against a bowling line-up that included Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar. It was on one of the biggest stages in international cricket – the World Cup in 2003.
Tendulkar’s 98 in that match is often regarded as one of his finest innings, which took India through to the Super Six stage of the tournament. In India, this win was celebrated as if the team had won the World Cup. India did reach the final of that edition, but lost to Australia.
Imran Khan’s best bowling figures of 6/14 were in a one-day international against India March 22, 1985, but for the swashbuckling Pakistan fast bowler it was all in vain.
Khan ripped apart the Indian batting line-up at Sharjah in the UAE to send the opposition packing for 125. But Pakistan’s own batting imploded, skittled for just 87.
Khan – now Pakistani prime minister – was still man of the match, however.
A sword for a six
The match that will always evoke the bitterest memories for India, and the sweetest ones for Pakistan, was on April 18, 1986, again an ODI in Sharjah.
With Pakistan needing four off the last ball to win, India’s Chetan Sharma ran in and bowled a full toss – which Javed Miandad swatted for six.
Miandad, who was presented with a golden sword, became a national hero, while Sharma faced barbs and insults on his return home.
Sohail vs Prasad
This was one of the most entertaining World Cup matches between the two teams. There was controversy even before this 1996 World Cup quarter-final began, as Pakistan captain Wasim Akram pulled out at the last minute.
While some great knocks from Navjot Sidhu (93 off 115), Ajay Jadeja (45 off 25), Aamir Sohail (55 off 48) and Saeed Anwar (48 of 32) provided entertainment, it was some sledging between Sohail and India fast bowler Venkatesh Prasad that this match is most remembered for.
After reaching his fifty, Sohail slashed Prasad to the extra-cover fence for four and pointed his bat at the bowler and then towards the ball, as if to say, “Go fetch that.” The very next delivery, he tried to repeat the shot but missed it and was bowled. Prasad was not going to let him head back to the pavilion without a word. Let’s just say, some words were exchanged, as the Bangalore crowd went wild.
India won the match by 39 runs.
An India-Pakistan final in the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup and a sell-out crowd in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2007 was a perfect setting for cricket’s newest format.
Pakistan’s Misbah ul Haq was on the cusp of taking his team to a memorable win with his gritty batting in a chase of 158.
But then came a moment of madness as Haq tried to play an audacious paddle shot to seal victory against paceman Joginder Sharma in the final over.
The ball went high into the waiting hands of S Sreesanth. Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s India celebrated like never before as Haq missed a chance of a lifetime.
With inputs from AFP