Pakistan ended their winless streak over India at World Cups during the 2021 T20 World Cup in the UAE. Prior to that contest, India had won all the matches against Pakistan at World Cups (ODI and T20). Shaheen Afridi broke the back of the Indian batting order by taking the wickets of KL Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, who was the captain back then. Needing 152 to win, Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan then ensured that Pakistan finished off the chase without losing a single wicket and more than two overs to spare.

Pakistan captain Babar hit 68 off 52 while Rizwan was 79 not out in 55 balls. India, however, took their revenge a year later during the T20 World Cup in Australia, beating Pakistan by four wickets, courtesy of Kohli’s unbeaten 82-run knock.

With both teams set to meet in the T20 World Cup once again on June 9, Rizwan recalled the circumstances leading up to the match and revealed the then PCB chairman’s advice to the players.

Rizwan revealed that Ramiz had asked the players to win the game against India no matter what.

“We had never beaten India before that (in a World Cup). Ramiz Raja met us and said, you have to beat India. There was a long time to go for the World Cup when he first came in (as PCB president) but he had started developing this thought in the team from right then. As we got closer to the World Cup he said, regardless of whether you win the trophy or not, just don’t lose to India. He used to say don’t come under pressure, and then would put pressure on us,” Rizwan said in an event in Dallas.

Rizwan also revealed that since it was his first time facing India at the global stage, he didn’t really realise the importance of that result until after the event. 

“India vs Pakistan always comes with pressure. People may not watch all matches in a tournament but this is a game everyone sits down to watch, regardless of which country they belong to. At the time we had Matthew Hayden with us. He put his arms around me and the captain and asked how we are feeling. The captain said that we have worked hard and now we leave it all in the hands of God.

“For me it was all a first, whether it be playing in a World Cup or in such a big match. So I was feeling quite normal, I didn’t think this was any different from any other match. But when we won, that is when I realised what we achieved. In Pakistan, say I go for shopping somewhere, people won’t take money. Then I stopped going out for shopping because they just weren’t taking money from us, they were all commending us for beating India. Everyone I met was commending us for the win. Once when I went to someone’s room they had the match playing on television and said that they watch it everyday,” he added.

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