Pakistan And India:. The neighbors haven’t played a Test match since 2007, only clashing during shorter matches and multi-team championships played abroad.
KARACHI: One of the sport’s biggest rivalries was born out of the terrible separation that India and Pakistan overcame 75 years ago.
Any cricket match between the two countries is currently one of the most watched events on the international sporting calendar. The success is utilized to further each nationalism.
The competition between the nations is so intense that they are unable to even share the anniversary of the split that granted them independence, with Pakistan commemorating it on August 14 and India the following day.
Wasim Akram, one of cricket’s all-time greats and currently a commentator, remarked, “India playing Pakistan engages the sentiments of millions.”
According to the former Pakistani captain, “You become a hero if you do well. You are a villain if your side loses.”
Since gaining independence from Britain in 1947 the two countries fought four wars. They used matches to ignite immense fervor. They also used to it to ease wartime tensions.
Pakistan’s military dictator General Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq unexpectedly arrived in New Delhi in 1987 during a moment of saber-rattling as troops gathered around their border, allegedly to watch a game between the two countries.
The maneuver, which was as cunning as anything a cricket captain could think up on the pitch, resulted in a meeting with Rajiv Gandhi, the Indian prime minister, and tensions subsided.
The “Mother of All Matches”
However, for the time being, the rivalry has moved off the cricket field.
Since 2007, the neighbors have not faced off against each other in a Test match; instead, they have only competed against one another in shorter forms of the game and multi-team events abroad.
Cricket fans throughout the world stick to their TV screens when they play. They will play at the Asia Cup later this month in the United Arab Emirates. This is a multimillion-dollar windfall for broadcasters.
273 million people watched the India vs. Pakistan 50-over World Cup match in 2019. And 167 million who watched them in the Twenty20 World Cup the year before.
Imran Khan, a former cricket captain and Pakistan’s World Cup-winning skipper who led his country to victory in the 1992 World Cup claimed in a Sky Sports documentary that “nothing can rival an Indo-Pakistan bilateral series since it is played in a different league.”
“Tension, pressure, and happiness permeate the air.”
The chief executive of the Pakistan Cricket Board referred to contests versus India as the “mother of all cricket matches.”
Fans demand regular matches between these two nations. But he told AFP that a thaw in tensions is necessary before play can resume.
We have no choice except to wait and hope.
European colonial overlords first played cricket on the subcontinent in the 18th century. But locals picked up the sport as practice cricketers in the practice nets.
After the partition, the majority of Muslim players, including three who had played for the national side, fled to Pakistan. And forcing that country to start over after India gained Test status in 1932.
In 1952, Pakistan played its first Test match against India. Abdul Hafeez Kardar, one of the three double internationals, served as their captain.
Pakistan and India have since played 59 tests, with Pakistan winning 12, India winning 9, and the remaining tests ending in draws.
Pakistan also has the advantage in ODIs, while India has prevailed in seven of their last nine T20 matches.
Since their first encounter in 2005, India has won all 11 of their ODIs and 10 of their Twenty20 matches in the women’s game.
The rivalry has only grown since one-day cricket was introduced, with one pundit referring to their matchups as “war without shooting.”
Aaqib Javed’s seven-wicket haul, which included a hat-trick, helped Pakistan win the Wills Trophy in Sharjah in 1991 during a game that finished in the midst of the night, infuriating the losing Indian team and their supporters.
They complained about it for months, Aaqib remarked sarcastically.
Wasim Akram received death threats from Pakistani supporters after he withdrew from a crucial final against India due to injury, however.
Akram stated, “There are times when the fans’ response is intolerable.
Sanjay Manjrekar, a former Indian batsman, stated he misses playing Pakistan frequently.
He told AFP that the opposition was his favorite because of the pleasure their on-field banter offered.
“Plus, they were a damn excellent side,” was said.
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