So we have an India-Pakistan final in the ICC Champions Trophy. After two weeks of cricketing extravaganza, we have reached an enthralling finale to the tournament that is often called the mini-world cup. And what a tournament it has been. We have seen so many unexpected events turn out with Australia being dumped out in the group stages and Bangladesh reaching the semi-finals. But the climax is the most anticipated moment of all for sure. Nothing gets bigger than an India-Pakistan final. Memories of the 2007 ICC World T20 are still afresh. But why is this match so important to all India-Pakistan cricket fans? Why is it so big in all respects?
An India-Pakistan match is not just another cricket match. It’s more of a traditional rivalry that stretches beyond the sports arena and into the political divide between the two bitter nations. People from both nations want their teams to perform better than the other because of this reason. It is a matter of sheer pride and respect.
An India-Pakistan is big on drama as well. On-field games are high octane, pulsating contests. The emotional and psychological tension among the players is there for everyone to see. Often this results into sledging between players. Verbal action is used to vent out the frustration that resides in the players’ minds.
India-Pakistan matches are comparable to the El Clasico and Argentina-Brazil matches in football because of the long history the two share. Besides being a sporting spectacle, it has become more of a cultural phenomenon. Cricket is by far the most popular sport in both countries. This adds to the occasion when these two meet. Various heads of state have witnessed the match live from the stadium making this contest even more nerve-wracking.
The Grand Conclusion
The match in the group stages was just a prelude to the grand finale. The real battle lies ahead and team India heads into it full of confidence after their easy victory over Bangladesh in the semi-final. Pakistan have been no slouch either with a morale boosting win over hosts England in their previous game. It can once again be touted as a match between India’s batting prowess versus Pakistan’s pace battery. India look the stronger side on paper but Pakistani bowlers have favourable conditions for bowling and will be looking for a second time lucky charm. Anyways the match is going to be one cracker of a match and Indians all over the country and abroad will be hoping that team India repeat their feat of 2013 and successfully bring home the trophy.