Amit Kumar

Will India be able to win this battle or it will have another rip through in Pakistan team at Mohali?
 
After thrashing Kangaroos and ending their dominance in the World Cups, it’s time to conquer Pakistan in the high-octane semi-final clash at Mohali on Wednesday.
 
The arch-rivals will arrive at jam-packed Punjab Cricket Association Stadium clash where more than30,000 spectators would be eagerly waiting for the heat.
 
Both the sides will be firing all cylinders with a huge extravaganza after a long span of 8 years.
 
Pakistan has never beaten India in World cups.
 
The entire Chandigarh is under a tight blanket of security, as both the countries will be countering for the first time in the Indian sub-continent since the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.
 
The venue and its connected areas are going to be a no-fly zone during the match keeping in mind that high-profile dignitaries are expected to visit the stadium to witness the crucial encounter between the two teams vying for a place in the finals.

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh along with Pakistani counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani and President Asif Ali Zardari will come to watch the game.
 
An estimated 1,000 police have already descended on the luxury Hotel Taj in nearby Chandigarh where both teams are staying, a force which includes Indian army commandos.
 
Just like Ashes between Australia and England, India and Pakistan matches has special meaning for people because each match between these arch-rivals leaves some unforgettable moment.

In 2003, Virender Sehwag had once come up with this highly entertaining tale about his sledging with Shoaib Akhtar during an India-Pakistan match: “Shoaib was repeatedly bowling bouncers and kept taunting Virender Sehwag by saying `show me your hook shot’.
 
After a lot of this sort of talk, when Sachin was on strike, Sehwag told him pointing out at Sachin, `that’s your father at the non-striker’s end. Ask him to show you the shot.’ Next over Shoaib bounced at Sachin and he hooked him for a six. Then Viru walked by Shoaib and remarked, “Beta beta hota hai, baap baap hota hai”.
 
India have won all four times they have played against Pakistan in the World Cups, consecutively between 1992 and 2003. If we talk about venue, then at the Punjab Cricket Association, Mohali, Pakistan lead 2-0 having won both their games in April 1999 and Nov 2007. 
 
Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi leads the wickets tally with 21 wickets at an economy rate of 3.48. Umar Gul, with 14 wickets with a healthy 3.86 economy, is one of the leading pace attack. Part-time spinner Mohammed Hafeez has seven wickets.
 
Pakistan batting has been brittle throughout the tournament, so that India can take an edge of it. Afridi is the only key to success for Pakistan team.
 
One and only Umar Akmal (211 runs) in the Pakistan team is their leading run getter, and more will be expected from the likes of Misbah-ul-Haq (192 runs), Kamran Akmal (188 runs), Younus Khan and Mohammed Hafeez (172 runs apiece).
 
India have a very strong top and middle order with Sachin Tendulkar (379 runs), Virender Sehwag (342 runs) and four-time man-of-the-match Yuvraj Singh (341 runs) within the top 10 scorers in the tournament.
 
The bowling, despite the spearhead Zaheer Khan's stellar performance (17 wickets), has been lacking teeth. None of the other frontline bowlers have had much impact. The part time spinner Yuvraj Singh (11 wickets) has compensated with his left-arm spin.

The devastating Virender Sehwag needs just two runs for completing 1,000 runs against Pakistan in his blistering career.

Where, skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni needs 24 for completing 1,000 runs against the rival Pakistan and 67 for 6,000 runs in ODI career.

Delhi boy Gautam Gambhir needs 51 for completing 4,000 runs.

Glenn McGrath holds the record for most wickets in a tournament with 26 in 2006-07. In this tournament Shahid Afridi has 21 and Zaheer Khan 17.
 
Here's the statistics between India and Pakistan:
 
Head To Head:

Both teams have played 119 One Day Internationals so far, out of which India have won: 46 and Pakistan: 69 and No result: 4
 
Matches played in the World Cup:

India and Pakistan have played four matches in the World Cup history and India have not let Pakistan to win even a single match leading 4-0.
 
Matched played in India: 26
India won:
9
Pakistan won:
17
 
The first India versus Pakistan ODI was played at Quetta on October 1, 1978. India won the 40 over match by 4 runs. India scored 170/7 and Pakistan could only score 166/8. Mohinder Amarnath with 51 runs and 38/2 was the man of the match.
 
The last India-Pakistan ODI (prior to the upcoming Mohali Word Cup clash) was played at Dambulla, Sri Lanka. India won by 3 wickets. Pakistan scored 267 and India replied with 271/7. Gautam Gambhir got the man of the match award for his 81 runs.
 
 
Results in last five head-to-head ODIs:
 
14 Jun 2008: Pakistan won by 25 runs at Dhaka
26 Jun 2008: India won by six wickets at Karachi
2 Jul 2008: Pakistan won by eight wickets at Karachi
26 Sept 2009: Pakistan won by 54 runs at Centurion
19 Jun 2010: India won by three wickets at Dambulla
 
 
India Performance in 2011 ICC World Cup Tournament
 
Indian team won 5 games out of the 7 matches including quarter final.
 
Pakistan Performance in 2011 ICC World Cup Tournament
 
Pakistan team won 6 games out of the 7 matches including quarter final.
 
Pitch Report:  Mohali pitch is considered to be batting friendly, therefore, toss will be the deciding factor. If Indian skipper Dhoni win the toss then he should opt to bat and set a healthy total for rivals. Spinners Bhajji and Ashwin can play crucial role, as the venue’s pitch meant for spinners.

Teams From:

India: MS Dhoni (CAPTAIN) , Gautam Gambhir , Sachin Tendulkar , Suresh Raina , Virat Kohli , Virender Sehwag , Ashish Nehra , Harbhajan Singh , Munaf Patel , Piyush Chawla , Ravichandran Ashwin , Sreesanth , Zaheer Khan , Yusuf Pathan , Yuvraj Singh , Gary Kirsten COACH

Pakistan: Shahid Afridi (CAPTAIN) , Ahmad Shahzad , Asad Shafiq , Misbah-ul-Haq , Umar Akmal , Younus Khan , Abdur Rehman , Junaid Khan , Saeed Ajmal , Shoaib Akhtar , Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz , Abdul Razzaq , Mohammad Hafeez , Kamran Akmal

(JPN/Bureau)