Stories about match

This August 14, I learnt patriotism from Hindu Marwari children

This year, covering a sports event on August 14 changed my perspective on what the word ‘hope’ really means. I never thought that amateur football players belonging to the poor Hindu Marwari community could teach me such an important lesson, but they did. They were playing an exhibition match with the Muslim Marwaris’ on Independence Day and how they played for Pakistan! The event that I covered is a mere news story; it can only serve the purpose of informing readers and cannot reflect the true emotions of these people unless you go out there and witness it for yourself. Their story is bigger ...

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Spot-fixing allegations: ICC, stop accusing Pakistan all the time!

Last-ball-wins in cricket are always thrilling, but when a debutante strikes a six on the last ball of the match to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat for his team, the moment is exhilarating for the team and fans alike. Zulfiqar Babar’s debut innings in the Pakistan versus West Indies match that ended with a resounding six on the last ball was one such occasion that will not be forgotten anytime soon. However the thrill of seeing my national team work hard for a victory and then finally clinch it through sheer determination was marred by the infuriating Daily ...

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Yuvi’s masterclass: A star in T20 cricket!

India -Pakistan matches are always torrid love affairs, and what a nail-biting encounter the second T20 turned out to be! Pakistan’s loss and inability to cross the finish line with just 26 runs pending in the last two overs was a deeply heart rendering sight- however, the credit for that goes primarily to Yuvraj Singh. Yuvraj may not be cut out for Test cricket as his repeated failures have shown, but in limited-overs cricket, he is one of the fiercest strikers there is and yesterday’s innings was a master class in clean hitting. This is one of those times when statistics tell the story ...

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Pakistan versus South Africa from a spectator’s perspective

As soon as you land at the Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo, Sri Lanka, you will not miss the celebratory environment set all around you.  You can see immediately that the nation is celebrating the T20 World Cup. The posters, banners, advertisements, leaflets, and everyone you meet will all convey the same message; the games are on! The famous Ranbir Kapoor advertisement on the T20 runs on national television approximately 1,000 times a day with a tag line being adopted by most cricket fans that goes like this, “Yeh T20 cricket hai, na tameez se kheli jaati hai, na tameez se dekhi jaati hai!” (This the ...

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London Olympics 2012: Our hockey team did no homework

Pakistan’s failure to qualify for the semi-finals wasn’t entirely unexpected — this team doesn’t have the potential to do better than this. Four years ago in Beijing, this very team, with the same bunch of players, finished eighth. This time again, a similar result is possible. I’d be surprised if people see the development as unexpected but the fact is that our build-up to the Olympics was marred by controversy, confusion and ill-planning. Seniors didn’t know whether they’d make it to the squad or not before they were slapped with fines. Their inclusion in the team was a last-minute decision and ...

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Diary of an avid cricket fan

My phone beeped. It was an SMS from a friend who had grown skeptical of the Pakistan Cricket Team since the 1999 World Cup Final debacle. “So are your chuckers going to win?” It was the eve of the 2009 T20 World Cup final. And even though he knew that the response he would get would be oozing with positive energy, hope and an incomprehensible delight for one of the most unpredictable sports team in all sports throughout history, he still wanted to know. You see, after a long time this team was showing some spine. It was regenerating interest in the ...

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It’s not all Sami’s fault

Pakistan’s stunning defeat in the final match of the One-Day International (ODI) series against Sri Lanka has seen harsh criticism come ’s way and perhaps, rightly so. The fast-bowler managed to do, with some help from our fielders, what our batsmen have been guilty of doing quite regularly of late — snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. As much as the blame for the defeat may lie with Sami, it is important not to lose sight of the bigger picture. In the recent past, more often than not, it has been the performance of our bowlers that has bailed ...

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Euro 2012: Let the football festivities begin!

The football festival started in Europe this Friday with the 2012 UEFA European Football Championship, commonly referred to as Euro 2012. Poland and Ukraine are hosting the event, while the rest of the world belts up to experience an array of great goals and intriguing games in the next three weeks. There are many aspects of Euro 2012 that are being overlooked due to the various off-field scandals that have attached themselves to the sport. The media seems to be inclined towards reporting the gossip rather than following the team and the sport itself. With some unsavoury match-fixing rumours still in ...

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Game On: Remembering Pakistan’s wonder years in hockey

Since its inception, Pakistan has been an extremely passionate sporting nation. Our players overcame the lack of resources quite well to win laurels for their country. At the Olympics in Rome in 1960, Pakistan won the gold medal for the first time because of Naseer Bunda’s game changing goal. This is when Pakistan was finally able to break through the stranglehold and constant winning spree that India had maintained on the gold medal in the Olympics. This was a sport that was enthusiastically followed by our nation and hockey players of the yesteryears were as popular as our national heroes. Pakistan’s second gold ...

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Pakistan’s Asia Cup victory: Silencing the naysayers

You’re sitting at the office  swamped with work and don’t want to do it – it’s the usual mood before a long weekend. Add to it the opportunity to watch Pakistan battle it out with Bangladesh for the crown of the Asian championship, and you have people just willing the clock to strike five. It was in this mood that we sat in the lunch area streaming the match live at around 1.30 PM on Thursday. During that passage of play, Pakistan lost two cheap wickets. Some declared that we were going to lose this, some weren’t sure and some ...

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