Cricket: Pakistan vs India 2006 (1st ODI)

January 15, 2007 4:35 pm

Match often coded as Sachin Tendulker Vs. Salman Butt as both of them made a century on that day. The fierce competition, which took India to score 328 and yet still lose the game. The match that will never be forgotten by any Indo-Pak cricket fan – “NO RUN IS MORE, WHEN IT COMES TO INDO-PAK MATCH”.

ODI # 2324
India in Pakistan, 2005-06, 1st One-Day International
Pakistan v India
Arbab Niaz Stadium, Peshawar
6 February 2006 (50-over match)

Bad light had the final say in a simply astonishing opening game, as Pakistan sneaked to a seven-run win in a high-scoring cliffhanger at Peshawar. In a match where it rained 639 runs, involving two superb hundreds and three ballistic fifties, Pakistan, chasing 329, required exactly a run-a-ball in the last three overs, with three wickets in hand, when the umpires offered the light.

Despite being up against a mountain of a total, Pakistan were always in control of their chase, and ahead on the Duckworth-Lewis system. Salman Butt laid the platform with a snazzy hundred while Shoaib Malik played the innings of the match with a stunning 67-ball 90, keeping Pakistan within striking range. India refused to let go, thanks to some inspired fielding and imaginative captaincy, and appeared to have snatched the advantage when Inzamam-ul-Haq was dismissed obstructing the field, but they were eventually thwarted by the murky skies, as the batsmen gladly walked off when given the chance.

India’s inability to wrap up the game, despite scoring 328, gives you an indication of the nature of the pitch, the outfield, the smallness of the ground, and the opposition they were up against. Sachin Tendulkar’s first hundred since April last year turned out to be the fulcrum around which they built the skyscraper, with Irfan Pathan and Mahendra Singh Dhoni joining in the gush of boundaries. They missed a trick once Tendulkar departed, losing their last six wickets for just 23 runs, stumbling against the persistent Mohammad Asif, and in hindsight they were probably a good 20 runs short.

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