Cricket isn’t cricket without Indo-Pak contests. On June 15, the two Asian giants are set to lock horns with each other in the Champions Trophy group stage match at Edgbaston, Birmingham. Fans of both countries are eagerly waiting for this match. Every cricket lover’s eye will be on their TV screen when the arch-rivals India and Pakistan confront with each other. Defeat for the fans of both countries is just unbearable. They just want their teams to win the match at any cost. During the contest between the two countries, every individual will be praying for their team’s success, forgetting all kinds of differences and yearning for their team’s victory.

If one goes by Champions Trophy’s history alone, the scale tied in the favour of Pakistan who have 2-0 lead over India. Pakistan are also leading in the total matches played between the two. Pakistan and India have played two matches in Champions Trophy and Pakistan have won both of them. Here, I’m discussing these two matches:

First ever Indo-Pak match at Champions Trophy
It was the fourth edition of the ICC Champions Trophy when Pakistan and India confronted each other for the first time in the event’s history. Pakistan won the low-scoring match by three wickets, thanks to Yousuf’s heroics. Indian top order collapsed horribly in front of Rana Naveed’s and Shoaib Akhtar’s catastrophic bowling. Half of the Indian team went back to the dressing room after 20 overs. India were 73 for 5. Then partnership of 82 runs between Dravid and Agarkar helped India to put exactly 200 on the board for all out.

Chasing a 201-run target, Pakistan’s top three batsmen were dismissed on 27. Then Inzamam and Yousuf batted responsibly and took the score to 102 for the loss of three wickets. Yousuf stayed at the crease till the end as Pakistan chased down the target in the last over. Yousuf remained unbeaten on 81.

Meanwhile, a scuffle between Shoaib Akhtar and Rahul Dravid made the fans more enthusiastic.

The Centurion Contest
That was the second confrontation between India and Pakistan in the Champions Trophy. Pakistan had won the toss and elected to bat. At 65, Pakistan’s top three batsmen were back to the pavilion. Then Muhammad Yousuf and Shoaib Malik took the charge and helped Pakistan recover their poise. The partnership between the duo was 206. Malik scored an unbeaten 128 while Yousuf scored 87. Pakistan put 302 runs on the board for the loss of nine wickets.

[caption id="attachment_1595" align="alignright" width="300"]Malik scored an unbeaten 128 in ICC Champions Trophy, 2009Malik scored an unbeaten 128 that help Pakistan to put 302 runs on the board in the Final of ICC Champions Trophy, 2009 (Picture © Getty Images)[/caption]

India received a big blow as they started their innings. Muhammad Aamir sent Sachin Tendulkar packing when the opponents’ total was just 23. However, Gautam Gambhir batted superbly after Sachin’s loss before he was run out by the direct hit of Younus Khan. That was the turning point of the match. India lost the match by 54 runs.

That was a little history of the Indo-Pak matches in the Champions Trophy. The matches between the two arch-rivals have always been spicy. Cricket usually doesn’t remain a gentleman sport when it comes to rivalry between the two. Nobody can forget the sledging between Afridi and Gambhir in an ODI. Similarly, nobody can forget Javed Miandad’s ‘frog-jump’ over the excessive appealing by Kiran More. And the row between Aamir Sohail and Venkatesh Prasad in the 1996 World Cup quarter-final match at Bangalore is also unforgettable.

Pakistan and India have played five ODIs in June. India have won three as compared to Pakistan’s two. Their upcoming match in the Champions Trophy also falls in June. Let’s have a look at the history of June ODIs between the neighbouring countries.

Indo-Pak confrontation during Kargil War
The Kargil conflict took place between May and July, 1999, making the relations between the two countries strained. It was against this backdrop of tension that India and Pakistan had to play a match at Old Trafford Manchester in the 1999 World Cup. It was match that required nerves of steel. India won the toss and opted to bat. India set a mediocre target of 227 runs. Dravid was the top-scorer from India with 61 runs. Wasim Akram and Azhar Mehmood were the most successful bowlers from Pakistan, taking two wickets apiece.

Half of the Pakistani team went back to the dressing room on just 78. Inzamam-ul-Haq and Moin Khan provided Pakistan with a little strength. Moin Khan succumbed to Indian bowlers when he was on 34. Inzamam managed to lead Pakistan to 175 for seven before he was bowled out on 41. Pakistan lost by 47 runs as a result.

Asia Cup 2000
Pakistan and India were face-to-face in the fifth match of the Asia Cup. Pakistan were off to a flying start. Both openers gave Pakistan a good start of 74 runs. Pakistan lost three quick wickets for one run to become 75 for three. Responsible batting from Muhammad Yousuf and Moin Khan helped Pakistan to put a good total on the scoreboard. Yousuf remained unbeaten on 100, helping Pakistan set a target of 296 runs.

Pakistani bowlers bowled to the full, especially Razzaq who impressed the audience by his heroics. Ajay Jadeja was the only Indian batsman who could stand Pakistani bowling attack. Pakistan sealed a 44-run victory as India were all-out on 251.

Pakistan biggest defeat against India by most runs
It was the second match of the tri-nation series between Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. India had won the toss and elected to bat against Pakistan. Indian openers started off well, making a first-wicket partnership of 155 runs. Virender Sehwag (89) was the top scorer from India followed by Gambhir (61) and Yuvraj (55). India set a smashing target of 331 runs for Pakistan.

As we all know Pakistan have never been good chasers. They failed to chase the huge target. Pakistan’s middle-order collapsed badly. Only Shoaib Malik and Kamran Akmal showed some courage against Indian bowlers. Pakistan lost that match by a big margin of 140 runs. That was also the Pakistan’s biggest ODI defeat against India in terms of runs.

The Final of Kitply Cup
Pakistani cricketers pose after winning

The Final of 2008 Kitply Cup was played on June 14 at Shere Bangla National Stadium, Mirpur. That was the second confrontation between Pakistan and India in this tournament. Having won the first match against Pakistan, India had an edge over their opponents. The toss was won by Pakistan who decided to bat. Salman Butt and Younis Khan scored centuries for Pakistan and made a 205-run partnership. Pakistan gave India a hefty 316-run target.

Indian came quite close to the target but failed to finish it off. They were all out on 290. MS Dhoni (64) and Yuvraj Singh (56) were the top-scorers for India. Umar Gul was the most successful bowler from Pakistan and took four wickets. Younis Khan was given the man-of-the-match award due to his brilliant performance in the crunch game.

Asia Cup 2008
In the 2008 Asia Cup, both sides came face-to-face in a group match played in Karachi. The greens shirts’ captain Shoaib Malik scored an unbeaten 125 runs, playing a pivotal role in Pakistan’s 299-run total at the loss of four wickets.

India easily chased down the target in the 43rd over with the loss of only four wickets. Virender Sehwag smashed 119 off just 95, including 12 fours and five sixes, while Suresh Raina scored 84. Both scored 198 runs together.

The nail-biter in 2010 Asia Cup
It was a thrilling contest between the two sides. The match was decided on the second last ball. Pakistan came to bat after winning the toss. With the help of Salman Butt’s 74, Malik’s 39 and a quick-fire 51-run innings by Kamran Akmal, including two fours and three sixes, Pakistan managed to gather a total of 267. Parveen Kumar took three wickets for India.

[caption id="attachment_1587" align="alignright" width="300"]Clash of Kamran Akmal and Gautam Gambhir in 2010 Asia Cup The clash between Kamran and Gambhir made the match more energetic.[/caption]

India chased that target in the last over at the loss of seven wickets. Gautam Gambhir and MS Dhoni batted superbly. Suresh Raina paced the innings at the end and took India to a winning position. Three runs were needed on the last two balls. Harbhajan Singh hit a massive six on Mohammad Aamir’s delivery to register India’s win.

The clash between Kamran Akmal and Gautam Gambhir and then between Akhtar and Harbhajan made the match more energetic.

So that is the history of ODI matches between Pakistan and India played in June. Pakistan will have an edge over India in the upcoming Champions Trophy as they have never been beaten against the arch-rivals in the tournament. Also Pakistan had recently won an ODI series in India against India 2-1. The young players of both sides have to handle the pressure which will be a must in the highly charged game. No rivalry between ant two teams can be compared to that of between Pakistan and India. Fans on both sides of the border can bear defeat from any other team but not from each other.

In the past, fans have often gotten violent and there have been reports of burning effigies of cricketers and at times even attacking at their homes. I hope this will not be the case this time.
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  1. Kya faida har tou gaye serious ... n guarantee kal b harenge

  2. Ali Hassan Baloch16 June, 2013

    Shame on Pakistan Cricket Team