Shame Pakistan don’t play India in bilateral series anymore, reckons Shoaib Malik

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Shame Pakistan don’t play India in bilateral series anymore, reckons Shoaib Malik

ISLAMABAD-Comparing the rivalry to Australia-England, Shoaib Malik reckons that it is a shame that Pakistan don’t play India in a bilateral series anymore, with the last series between the two sides coming back in 2012. Malik also reckoned that cricket badly needs the rivalry between the two sides to resume.

India’s rivalry with Pakistan in recent years has been reduced to ICC competitions alongside the Asia Cup. Apart from the global events, the two sides last played against each other in a bilateral series in 2012, when Pakistan toured India for a three-match ODI series and a two-match T20I event. While the visiting side won the ODI series 2-1, there was nothing to separate the two sides in the T20I series, which ended in a draw. 

Due to the strained relationship between the two countries in the recent past, the two sides have not met each other in a bilateral series. The rivalry has also very often been compared to the likes of the Ashes, a recurring event where Australia take on England. However, unlike the Ashes, the battle between the two neighbouring countries has been reduced to ICC events in the last eight years. Talking about the contest between the two sides, Pakistan’s all-rounder Shoaib Malik stated that it is a shame that the rivalry has come to a standstill. 

“I think the world badly needs this rivalry to resume, in the same way that world cricket needs the Ashes,” Malik told PakPassion.net, reported Hindustan Times. 

“Could England and Australia imagine Test cricket without an Ashes series? Both series are played with the same kind of passion and have such a great history, so it is a shame that we don’t play right now,” he added.

The all-rounder also recalled his knock from the 2009 edition of the Champions Trophy, where he scored a match-winning 128 to take Pakistan over the line against India, batting alongside Mohammad Yousuf. 

“From a personal point of view the 2009 Champions Trophy match at Centurion when I was Man of the Match after scoring 128 and the Asia Cup match in Sri Lanka in 2004 where I scored 143 from 127 balls and took the wickets of Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh are great memories.”

At 38 years of age, Malik is still an integral part of Pakistan's T20I set-up and is expected to play a key role in the upcoming World T20 for the Men in Green.