Cricket: Top five controversial moments in Ind-Pak encounters

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New Delhi: Whenever India play Pakistan in a cricket match, there’s bound to be some drama as players are high on adrenaline, not willing to let their foot down to outplay the opposition.

Whether it comes to skills or verbal exchanges, players of both the teams leave no stone unturned to emerge victorious. With all the hype and buzz around what is touted to be the “mother of all clashes”, players often indulge in verbal exchanges and altercations which, despite looking ugly, make the game even more exciting.

And when the Men in Blue take on Pakistan in their fourth World Cup fixture in Manchester on Sunday, one can be rest assured that apart from cricket, fans would be treated be some raw emotions and heated verbal exchanges at the Old Trafford.

India have an awesome record against Pakistan when it comes to World Cup, leading the 1992 champions 6-0 in all editions of the showpiece event.

IANS takes a look at the top five controversial moments which took place in the past during the high-octane India-Pakistan clashes:

Javed Miandad mimicking Kiran More in 1992

During the 1992 World Cup match at Sydney in Australia, Pakistan’s Javed Miandad was getting agitated by India wicketkeeper Kiran More’s excessive appealing.

The two exchanged words and Miandad even complained to the umpire. In the very next delivery, the Pakistan batsman ran a double and even though he had made his ground, More took the bails off and appealed for a run-out.

More’s over-enthusiastic appeal for a leg-side catch of Miandad during the match brought out one of the most hilarious reactions from the Pakistan batsman. A frustrated Miandad jumped up and down to mimic More, leaving everyone in splits.

Venkatesh Prasad’s perfect reply to Amir Sohail in 1996

In the 1996 World Cup quarterfinal at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru, Pakistan were in a formidable position during their chase of 287, with Amir Sohail keeping the scorers busy.

After he brought up his fifty with a lovely cover drive off the bowling of Venkatesh Prasad, some words were exchanged between the duo. Sohail pointed at the cover boundary, suggesting that he would be hitting Prasad’s next ball there.

However, it was the Indian medium pacer who had the last laugh as he clean bowled Sohail the very next ball.

Prasad, who was generally quite clam and composed, didn’t hold back and gave a send-off to Sohail.

Verbal exchange between Gambhir, Afridi in 2007

During the third ODI of Pakistan’s tour of India in 2007, India opener Gautam Gambhir got involved in a nasty verbal altercation with Shahid Afridi at the Green Park stadium in Kanpur.

After Gambhir hit Afridi for a boundary, the Pakistan all-rounder uttered a few words which the former didn’t react to. However, in the same over, Gambhir collided with Afridi while taking a quick single. Following the collision, pleasantries (in Hindi and Punjabi) were exchanged between the duo and eventually the umpires had to intervene to calm down both the players.

Gambhir-Kamran verbal spat in 2010

Another incident involving Gambhir occurred in the fourth game of the 2010 Asia Cup in Dambulla, Sri Lanka. The left-hander missed a nudge around the corner off Saeed Ajmal and the ball was pouched by wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal, who thought he had his man. He
made an overzealous appeal for a catch which was eventually turned down by the umpire.

However, during the drinks break, Gambhir and Kamran advanced towards each other and almost butted heads while exchanging glares and spilling expletives at each other.

Umpire Billy Bowden had to intervene to separate them and Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who was Gambhir’s batting partner at that moment, quickly pulled the Delhi lad away to defuse the tension.

Harbhajan-Akhtar showdown

In the same match where Gambhir and Kamran Akmal were involved in a verbal spat, a showdown also took place between Shoaib Akhtar and Harbhajan Singh in the dying moments of the game.

India, chasing 267, needed seven runs of the last over. The atmosphere was tense as India didn’t have any proper batsman at the crease. Akhtar, who bowled the penultimate over, was trying to ensure that Harbhajan didn’t take India home.

During the over, the off-spinner missed one of the balls and Akhtar started hurling expletives in Punjabi. Seeing both the players getting high on emotions, the umpires were forced to intervene.

However, it was Harbhajan who had the last laugh as he smacked Mohammad Amir for a maximum in the next over. He was seen roaring like a tiger which didn’t impress Akhtar, who was stationed at the fine-leg boundary.

(Agencies)