By Gaurav Lakhanpal

India Vs Pakistan – just the sound of this makes the fans on both sides of the border worked up with emotions, excitement and enthusiasm! When this is at the World Cup, it goes to a different level altogether.

I love cricket and even if India is not playing I would still like to watch the game, but an India-Pakistan encounter is something I would not miss at any cost. I have followed the Indian team around the world and had planned to visit Australia to watch the India Vs Pakistan and India Vs South Africa games more than a year in advance. Here are some key memories from India Vs Pakistan experience at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015:

Getting into the ground for India Vs Pakistan game:
I wanted to reach the ground at least an hour before the start so I could watch the players practice – this usually gives a good picture of the intensity of the two teams. We started from my friend Jerry’s fabulous country house in Houghton around 11:30 AM for the 20 Km ride to the Adelaide Oval. Getting closer to the city we saw supporters of both teams on the streets, mostly blue though, making their way to the ground. It was mayhem outside the stadium, people with drums, whistles, flags, waves of blue with a dash of green. Supporters from both sides were having a ball and as you could imagine took us a while getting into the stadium.

The atmosphere inside the Adelaide Oval:
If you have not watched an India Vs Pakistan game live in a stadium, then you won’t know what I am talking about – the noise in the stadium was reaching a crescendo even before a ball was bowled! India was out practicing hard even before the toss and all the way until the start of the game. Indian bowlers notably Mohit Sharma, Umesh Yadav and Shami were practicing their bowling with intent and the fielders were doing their bit. You could see they really wanted to win this game.

The key moments of the game:
The game itself was quite fantastic with India maintaining and extending their dominance on Pakistan in World Cup games to 6-0 (as I write this blog, there is an outside chance of India meeting Pakistan again in ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 – here’s hoping for 7-0!). Virat Kohli did not disappoint, scoring his century in style, but the game changer for me came from Raina; Dhoni didn’t miss a trick as Raina had done that in 2011 World cup against Pakistan and he did that again today. The chants of “Jeetage bhai Jeetaga, India Jeetega”, “Bharat Mata ki jai” amongst others, reverberated not only across Adelaide Oval but probably across the entire city of Adelaide! One Pakistani fan in front of us, when Pakistan was batting, turned around and asked me why are we so quite, when Shehzad and Sohail were batting well, so I said to him “it’s a long game mate!”. Almost on cue, a sharp fielding effort from Raina got the crowd going once again and the Pakistan batting started to crumble.

Amazing Adelaide:
When I was buying the tickets for the two games I had planned to watch, I was wondering why Adelaide was chosen for such an important game. Why not swap it with Melbourne? After all Melbourne has a bigger ground (the biggest actually!) and as a city has more fans from the subcontinent which would have led to a better atmosphere for the game. But boy, Adelaide was so amazing it won not only my heart but also that of countless of cricket fans. While it’s not a big city, but it’s a very impressive one and the people are really sports loving. Indian fans had taken over Adelaide streets after the game providing probably the biggest street party Adelaide would have seen. Streets were blocked with people dancing, singing, playing drums, stopping traffic and what impressed me the most was that there was no honking from the cars; Adelaide waited patiently for the fans to celebrate.

This year when cricket’s biggest event rolls up be where the action is! Plan a trip to Australia and New Zealand with Eventraveler’s ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 page. For more on Adelaide visit our pages for Adelaide city and Adelaide Oval .

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