There used to be a time when an India-Pakistan clash would be defined by what happened on the pitch and not off it. It wasn't too long ago – just 20 years to the day on March 9 – that India and Pakistan met in Bangalore to decide which of them would progress to the semi-finals of the 1996 World Cup.
And it was then that Ajay Jadeja played the kind of knock that would not have been out of place in the modern Twenty20 format.
Jadeja's assault was all the more unexpected because of what preceded it. In a high-pressure game, both sides were nervous. Navjot Singh Sidhu's hard-fought 93 had taken India to 236/6 in 47 overs. Waqar Younis ran in to bowl to Ajay Jadeja, who chose that moment to go berserk. Over the next six balls, Jadeja simply tore into Younis, smashing him for three boundaries and a massive six – with the over going for 22 runs.
Younis did get his own back, dismissing Jadeja in the last over for a 25-ball 45, but the damage had already been done: India posted an imposing 287/8 in their 50 overs, smashing 51 runs in their last three overs.
The drama, of course, didn't end there. When Pakistan had motored to a comfortable 113/1 in their first 15 overs, the game seemed to be over. Aamir Sohail hit Venkatesh Prasad for a four and then gestured towards the boundary with his bat, openly lampooning the Indian bowler. The normally impassive Prasad was not impressed, waiting till he took out Sohail's off stump with the next ball before providing a fitting send-off.