Life on the subcontinent will halt today. Yes, we are talking about one of the world’s greatest cricket rivalries unraveling at the world’s biggest cricketing tournament. There are plenty of much-anticipated contests in the 2019 Cricket World Cup but nothing to compare with India vs Pakistan. The rivalry is regularly punctuated by war.
When the two nations play, it is of course doesn’t remain remain just a ‘game’. Emotions run high in the air. This is visible in every celebration, every sledge and every eye-to-eye contact that a bowler makes with a batsman. In Manchester,England cricket fans will revel in the gladiatorial aspect of this occasion calmly. Before the most intensified competition begins on the ground, we are here to take you the tour of some of the most unheard facts of this epic rivalry:
#1. Inzamam’s ‘bat behaviour’
India and Pakistan met in Canada in the year 1997 to commemorate 50 years of independence. They played five matches at the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling club. Apart from the Indians winning quite comfortably by 8 wickets, Inzamam-ul-Haq’s infamous ‘Bat Behavior’ made the headlines.
Inzamam was dismissed by Venkatesh Prasad. While, returning to the dressing room seemed to have hit a spectator with his bat. The spectator, was later identified as an Indian supporter. The supporter called him a ‘potato’.
#2. Three players that have played for both teams
We are sure you must have been surprised after reading this. But this is true. There were three players who represented India as well Pakistan cricket team at international level. This uncommon ‘phenomenon’ happened due to partition in 1947. Gul Mohammad, Amir Elahi, and Abdul Hafeez Kardar played for India before Independence. After independence, Pakistan became a separate nation, they played from the team of Pakistan.
#3. Foundation of the rivalry
India played their first ODI against Pakistan on October 1 in 1978. The match was 40 over-per-side. It was held at the Ayub National Stadium, Quetta, Pakistan. India won the match by four runs. Courtesy: Mohinder Amarnath’s heroics. He scored a fifty and then claimed two scalps. This went on to lay the foundation of the mother of all battles.
#4. Viewership record
The encounter between India and Pakistan in 2011 World Cup attained a record of viewership. Women in India, generally perceived to be not too keen to watch cricket matches. But on March 30, 2011 the scenes were different. The madness associated with the India-Pak match was in true form. With 6.73 crore viewers watching the match on TV, it was the grandest of all events. India won the match against Pakistan and also won the World Cup.
#5. A deliberate run out
Pakistan’s Sultan of swing Wasim Akram once revealed that his teammate Waqar Younis wanted to get run-out. Reason? To prevent Anil Kumble from picking up his historic 10th wicket in an innings at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi in 1999. Pakistan lost nine wickets. The team was left with Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis at the crease. Akram recalled how Waqar discussed getting run-out. Akram said, “You can’t deny him the feat if he is destined for it. But I can assure you that I’m not going to give my wicket to Kumble. But, subsequently, it was me who gifted my wicket to Kumble.”
#6. Bird’s foul
The Asia Cup played in 1984 had a round-robin format . The India-Pakistan clash caught the attention of all. The match was going in a normal level. Abdul Qadir, the finest leg-spinner, bowled out with figures of 10-3-36-0.
Some people think it was due to miscommunication with scorers. The reason was unidentified. Umpires Herbi Felsinger and Dickie Bird managed to miscalculate the number of overs bowled by Qadir. Qadir started his 11th over, and even sent down two balls, off which Sandeep Patil scored a run. The scorers anxiously signalled at Bird and Felsinger, informing them of the situation. After a long discussion, Bird and Felsinger decided to cancel the two balls.