What a day!
From the start, it felt like something was perfectly right about this 2021’s Pakistan versus India match at the T20 World Cup.
Pakistan had never beaten India in an ICC World Cup event. India had the boasting rights as they had resisted the Pakistan challenge on 11 occasions before October 24, 2021. The famous ‘Mouqa Mouqa’ campaign came out with yet another advertisement to add to the wounds of the cricket crazy Pakistan fans.
Every Indian was quoting history to predict the result of the game, every Pakistani cricket fan was relying on the 2017 Champions Trophy final defence and ‘hoping and praying’ that Babar Azam and co can finally do the impossible. There was certainty that India will win -- the unique win record, plethora of stats and India’s current form were in favour of it. There was doubt that Pakistan will be able to come out on the top – they had just lost warm-up to South Africa and had the pressure of doing the impossible on their back. Pakistan had to play David if they were to beat India, the Goliath.
The naysayers predicted that Pakistan wouldn’t last like the battery of one of the most famous brands of phone doesn’t. However, Pakistan turned the game on its head from the word go, and it felt like they were on flash charge like the OPPO Reno6 Pro phone: quick to the task and completely dependable. And even with the energy searing from their bodies, they didn’t burst. Instead, they contained it and channelled it to perfection.
As soon as Pakistan decided to bowl first, the match became a contest of who will be able to mask their weakness better. India are a batting powerhouse, Pakistan is a breeding ground for bowlers. India had to defend a target, Pakistan had to chase it.
Shaheen Shah Afridi came running in for his first over. A few people were seen wishing that it was Mohammad Amir instead of him; however, the youngster proved all doubters wrong with his inch-perfect dismissals of firstly Rohit Sharma and then KL Rahul. He reminded everyone of what Amir did to India in the 2017 Champions Trophy final and though it was nostalgic, there was this sooting satisfaction about the moment. Pakistan had found a perfect replacement for a perfect bowler. When Shaheen raised his arm to celebrate with the star-man pose, it seemed like a picture perfect moment, promisingly delivered by OPPO Reno6 Pro through its Bokeh Flare feature.
And when Babar hit the winning runs, creating an elusive record which many Pakistan captains were unable to deliver, of beating India in the World Cup, it was bliss in its truest and purest form. Pakistanis had waited decades to see such a consistent performance from any pair of openers and Babar and Mohammad Rizwan delivered a performance, which could even put to shame the Qualcomm Snapdragon 870 octa-core processor of the OPPO Reno6 Pro phone.
A 10-wicket win over India, and that too in such a crunch match was nothing less than a spectacle for the Pakistani fans. Meanwhile, the Indian fans left the stadium in a rush, probably to avoid the disappointment that their team had put them in. There is no doubt India played well too, but as per Virat Kohli’s own words in the post-match press conference, “Pakistan can beat anyone when it’s their day”.
Next up is New Zealand, and this time around it is not only India the Pakistani fans are concerned about. After their last-minute withdrawal from the limited-overs tour of Pakistan, New Zealand have jumped up to number two on the most important team to beat. And with the confidence from the win over India, it seems like that it will be another walk in the park for Pakistan when they face the Black Caps.
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