With just under a month to go before the World Cup Cricket 2011 begins, a tech entrepreneur is seeking to revive the traditional sporting rivalry between India and Pakistan through another game - that of tic-tac-toe!
The game of noughts and crosses that opened for play at the online site teampinch.com from January 18 is inviting people from both countries to assemble virtually and play against each other.
"For at least a year I have been toying with the idea of engaging people on a social level. I quite liked the idea of engaging people between two different countries which has a history of sporting rivalry," says Girish Lakshminarayana, a technology consultant and the brain behind the game.
Using Facebook as the platform where people are invited to join two groups, Girish says a fresh game is played over a week, one move a day with the move passing to the other team at 11am everyday. He says his research has proved the morning time slot to be the one most free of distractions to play a game.
"Let them wear the look of incredulousness. We won't be mean but still wont play nice it's Pakistan vs India again at teampinch.com we pitch our tent and shine.
"Where rain cannot stop play and no ads that interplay and commentators don't whine and no sight screens to complain/where the toss won't ruin the game and no match fixing to bring shame with googlers and facebookers and tweeters cheering you can now be your own Sachin," writes Girish in an advertisement circulated for the event.
The entrepreneur who helms a London-based company, has previously also launched a range of online tools that can help to monitor and manage media.
"We want to how well the India-Pakistan game is received before launching other games between countries such as North and South Korea and other ethnicities too," says Girish.
Participants are expected to vote for a particular move based on which the noughts and crosses would be placed on the online tic-tac-toe board.
For example, the most voted for boxes would be taken as a move for India before the game switches to Pakistan's players at 11am the following day.
"It is surprising to find that players will not vote for the most obvious move. In college when I used to play similar games we found that 80% of the people did not vote for the most obvious result. Maybe it has got to do with social dynamics," says Girish who wants to capture the imagination of the maximum number of people.
"It would be fun to see how it works as there would be no stars of the stature of say Sachin Tendulkar involved but ordinary people who would don the mantle of players," says the technology consultant who is being encouraged by "positive feedback" from like-minded entrepreneurs.
The game set to end on February 19 hopes to garner support through other social networking sites such as Twitter and Google.