India will face Pakistan in the second game of their Asia Cup T20 campaign at the Shere Bangla National Stadium, Saturday, in ann encounter that cricket fans from around the globe have been eagerly waiting for.
In the history of the shortest format of the game, India and Pakistan have locked horns six times. India have won five out of the six times, including that unforgettable ICC World T20 2007 final.
India have never tasted defeat at the hands of Pakistan in World Cups, and MS Dhoni & co. will look to assert their dominance over Pakistan in this Asia Cup match as well, just like they did against Bangladesh in the opening game of the Asia Cup T0 2016 on Wednesday.
As India and Pakistan will face each other for the seventh time in the history of the shortest format of the game, let us take a look at the last five T20 games between the two archrivals:
ICC World T20 2007 in South Africa, final – India won by 5 runs:
MS Dhoni won the toss and opted to bat first. Thanks to the batting heroics of Gautam Gambhir and a late flourish from Rohit Sharma, India reached a total of 157 at the end of their 20 overs. The run chase was never going to be easy for Pakistan. They kept on losing wickets at regular wickets, until Misbah-ul-Haq started turning the game in Pakistan's favour.
Pakistan needed 12 runs off the last over and Dhoni decided to throw the ball to Joginder Sharma, who bowled most of the last overs in that tournament. Sharma bowled a wide ball to start with and then was hit for a massive six over long on. Misbah tried to scoop the ball over the short fine-leg fielder next ball, but mistimed it horribly and it landed into S Sreesanth's hand. Pakistan lost that match by an agonisingly close margin.
Group 2 match, ICC World T20 2012 in Colombo – India won by 8 wickets:
This match had Virat Kohli written all over it. First, he impressed with the ball and then with the bat. Pakistan had won the toss and opted to bat first on a tricky wicket. They crumbled under the bowling of Lakshmipathy Balaji, R Ashwin, Yuvraj Singh and Kohli. Pakistan could only post a total of 128 runs. While chasing those runs, Kohli began in aggressive fashion, eventually scoring 78 runs from just 61 balls to help India go over the line with ease.
1st T20 in Bengaluru, 2012: Pakistan won by 5 wickets:
This was the only T20 match between the two nations in which Pakistan got the better of India. This was the first match of the two-match series, and Pakistan asked India to bat first in Bengaluru. From 77/0 to 124/9 – that is how India's innings fell apart in that match. In reply, Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik scored a half-century each to take Pakistan to a comfortable victory.
2nd T20 in Ahmedabad, 2012: India won by 11 runs:
Yuvraj Singh played a scintillating T20 innings in this game, as he went on to score 72 runs from just 36 balls. His innings was decorated by 7 sixes and 4 fours. India posted 192 runs on the scoreboard. In reply, Pakistan got off to a great start with the help of Ahmed Shehzad and Nasir Jamshed at the top of the order. Mohammad Hafeez's brisk innings of 55 runs from 26 balls could not help in Pakistan's cause as they fell short by 11 runs in the end.
Group 2 match, ICC World T20 2014 in Bangladesh: India won by 7 wickets:
India bowlers restricted Pakistan to a meager total of 130 runs in their allotted 20 overs. The Pakistani batsmen could not make any impact whatsoever in this Group 2 clash at the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur, Dhaka. Virat Kohli remained unbeaten on 36 and Suresh Raina ably assisted him from the other end. These two took India home comfortably with more than an over to spare to secure yet another victory over Pakistan in T20 cricket.