India-Pakistan isn't a rivalry, it's an emotion. There's a common notion in both the nations that they'll hate to lose a cricket match to the other nation. While there were always some obvious differences between the two nations, cricket seemed the one size fits all solution to settle all the differences.
Now that India and Pakistan are all set to lock horns again in the Champions Trophy, we'd love to look back on the most iconic encounters from this historic rivalry. From Javed Miandad hitting Chetan Sharma for a six on the last ball to literally the one and only bowl out in the World Cup. From the mesmeric semi-finals of the 2011 World Cup to the finals of the 2008 T20 World Cup. It was a hard task to select only six matches but we managed to do so. So we'd love to present to you the 6 iconic matches between India and Pakistan.
Back when India and Pakistan's rivalry was at its highest point, both of them met each other in the 1996 World Cup. India won that match by 29 runs but that wasn't the sweetest part. During the match, Aamir Sohail taunted Venkatesh Prasad after hitting him for a four and revenge came in the sweetest way when Prasad, on the next delivery bowled Sohail out. The sent off from Prasad is now a part of the Indian cricket folklore.
Like many of the matches, this one too went to the wire. In the final of the Asia Cup, Pakistan needed six runs to win the match and on the bowling end, it was Chetan Sharma with the bowl facing the iconic Javed Miandad. Sharma attempted to bowl a yorker but the length was too full and it resulted in a full toss which Miandad deposited in the stands. Pakistan won vs India at Shajahan - a famous hunting ground for them at that time.
In what was a reverse of the fortunes of 1986, India and Pakistan locked horns and the match once again went to the wire. India's top order crumbled against the Pakistani attack but it was Bhajji's heroics who hit a six off the second last ball to win India the game. Chetan Sharma would've been a relieved man.
Of all the matches, this one holds special sentiment in the minds of Indians simply because this could've been Sachin Tendulkar's last ever World Cup game add to the fact that this was the first time Pakistan team came to India post-2009 attacks and we got a match on our hands! India managed to win the match by 29 runs and who was the man of the match? You bet! Sachin Tendulkar.
In what was a thrilling encounter in the maiden ICC T20 World Cup, India met Pakistan in the group stages and they couldn't be separated in the 40 overs. So we saw a thrilling bowl out - a penalty shoot out like system in cricket where each team's bowler has to bowl and hit the unguarded stumps in what was a best of 5 sequence. India won that bowl out 3-0, winning the match and later on win the tournament against whom? You bet!
India vs Pakistan finals in an ICC event, it never gets any bigger than this. Pakistan never defeated India in an ICC event and were adamant to be the cat amongst the pigeons this time. The match boiled down to the final over when Misbah Ul Haq was standing in the way between India and the World Cup glory, up stepped Joginder Sharma. Sharma conceded a six, was talked into being calm by MS Dhoni, a mistimed shot, an 'In the air Sreesanth takes it!' scream later, India were the world champions! Indeed the most iconic India vs Pakistan match ever.
India will once again lock horns in an ICC event, this time in the Champions Trophy, this Sunday on June 4th.