"All the wives of the Pakistan players will accompany them in India"- 5 most controversial statements made about India vs Pakistan cricket rivalry
In the past, the two countries would regularly play bilateral series. However, due to political tensions between the two nations, India vs Pakistan cricket matches only take place at multi-nation tournaments now.
This year, fans will witness at least two India vs Pakistan cricket matches. The first will happen on August 28 in the Asia Cup, and the second will take place on October 23 during the ICC T20 World Cup.
Cricket matches between India and Pakistan have given birth to many controversies as well. In this listicle, we will look at the top five most controversial statements made about the rivalry.
#1 Ex-PCB chief's interesting advice to players ahead of India vs Pakistan series
Former Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Zaka Ashraf disclosed in an interview with Cricket Pakistan that when the Men in Green visited India in 2012, he advised his players to take their wives along with them. Explaining the reason behind it, Ashraf said:
"I advised that all the wives of the players will accompany them. This decision was taken so that no controversy could be created as Indian media is always on the lookout for that. The wives meant to also keep a check on the players."
#2 Harbhajan Singh asking for walkover
Ahead of India's T20 World Cup 2021 match against Pakistan, former Indian cricketer Harbhajan Singh directed a light-hearted jibe at former Pakistani speedster Shoaib Akhtar, saying that Pakistan should give India a walkover instead of playing the match.
The reason behind that statement was Pakistan's winless record against India at World Cups before the T20 World Cup 2021. However, Harbhajan's comments came back to bite him as Pakistan went on to register a historic win, defeating the Men in Blue by 10 wickets.
#3 Shahid Afridi's comment about Gautam Gambhir
Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi once wrote a column for the ICC, where he said that, despite the on-field rivalry, most Indian cricketers were friends with players from Pakistan. However, he also mentioned that there were those like Gautam Gambhir who did not like making friends.
“Contrary to popular belief, India and Pakistan players get along very well. Of course, there are exceptions like Gautam Gambhir, who dare I say isn’t the friendliest."
#4 Shahid Afridi's claim about Sachin Tendulkar
Another controversial remark made by former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi about the cricketing rivalry against India was related to Sachin Tendulkar. In one of his interviews, Afridi said he noticed that Sachin would shiver while playing Shoaib Akhtar's deliveries.
The former all-rounder said:
“While fielding, I saw Tendulkar's legs shivering while facing his [Akhtar's] bowling."
#5 Zulqarnain Haider's stunning claim about India vs Pakistan semi-final in 2011
Former Pakistan wicketkeeper Zulqarnain Haider recently commented that the 2011 World Cup semi-final match between India and Pakistan in Mohali was fixed. He alleged that former Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and former Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani played a role in match-fixing.
Pakistan lost to India in that match. Chasing a target of 261 in 50 overs, the Men in Green were all out for 231 in 49.5 overs. Sachin Tendulkar was adjudged the Man of the Match for his knock of 85 runs off 115 deliveries.