Modi calls Nawaz, wishes him luck in World Cup

Published: February 13, 2015
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PHOTOS: AFP

PHOTOS: AFP

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi called Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday to wish his cricket team luck in an ice-breaker conversation ahead of a World Cup grudge match between the arch rivals.

Modi said “cricket connects people in our region and promotes goodwill” after speaking with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and other South Asian leaders whose country’s teams are playing in the World Cup starting Saturday.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has directed the Ministry of Water and Power to ensure there is no load shedding in the country during the Pakistan-India cricket match which is scheduled to take place this Sunday.

Modi’s cricket diplomacy comes after relations soured last year between the two nuclear-armed neighbours over increased firing along their borders and cancelled peace talks between their officials.

Modi’s government is seen taking a more assertive stance towards its neighbour since coming to power last May. Modi and Sharif failed to hold a bilateral meeting at a SAARC summit in November.

Modi also took to Twitter to wish his fellow SAARC countries luck in the upcoming cricket World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

An economic and geopolitical organisation of eight countries, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) is represented by 5 of the 14 countries participating in the World Cup.

India’s new foreign secretary S Jaishankar will soon visit his South Asian neighbours, Modi also tweeted.

RELATED: Indian foreign secretary would like to visit Pakistan, Modi tells PM Nawaz

Millions of India and Pakistan fans are expected to watch Sunday’s clash on television, while thousands of others are set to flock to the Adelaide Oval in Australia.

All these five countries – Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan – are vying for the coveted trophy and preparations have been in full swing.

 

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Reader Comments (6)

  • Liberal
    Feb 13, 2015 - 2:11PM

    It is likely that the ICC aka Indian Cricket Council is going to award the WC to India anyways. so nothing new. Recommend

  • Swati
    Feb 13, 2015 - 4:48PM

    Modi is The master of the game called politics and diplomacy in the right way. Modiji Salute to youRecommend

  • Usman
    Feb 13, 2015 - 8:46PM

    The American whip makes it mark in Dehli. Modi knows what he’s been told by Obama. Although atm Pak is insignificant in this game, we know why the change of heart in Dehli.Recommend

  • Deepak
    Feb 13, 2015 - 9:43PM

    @Usman Friendly relation with saarc countries is India’s national interest. And besides he’s modi, he doesn’t buckle under pressure. He has record of over 15 years of delivery. He can even sack a secretary if he doesn’t think that she is not the best person for the job. He’s a very demanding boss. He recently got a new foreign secretary after sacking a lady who served for decades, and his intentions are clear. He will engage saarc.Recommend

  • Deepak
    Feb 13, 2015 - 9:51PM

    @Usman Pakistan is an important country, not many countries can fight terrorists as bravely as Pakistan can, and not only for this but you are a country with huge population and tremendous potential. Pakistan used to have brilliant growth rates and better living in formative years. I have absolutely no doubt that Pakistan can re-emerge and I pray it does. Pakistan was a great economy when religion was just a personal affair. Before the Golden pre bhutto days. Recommend

  • usman777
    Feb 13, 2015 - 11:33PM

    luck? we need more than luck. we need bowlers, batsmen, fielders….Recommend

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