'I said, what do you mean...': Sachin Tendulkar opens up on India-Pakistan World Cup tie, recalls iconic six
One of the most iconic matches Sachin Tendulkar has been part of was the 2003 World Cup tie in Centurion which the Sourav Ganguly-led side won by six wickets. But for Sachin, the most memorable moment was the six off Shoaib Akhtar.
An India versus Pakistan game is always a high-pressure match. The two have shared a rivalry like no other and hence players who have had the luxury to be part of the contest remember every second of it. And its a similar for legendary Sachin Tendulkar, who has appeared in the most India-Pakistan matches in the ODI contest. One of the most iconic matches the former India batter has been part of was the 2003 World Cup tie in Centurion which the Sourav Ganguly-led side won by six wickets. But for Sachin, the most memorable moment was the six off Shoaib Akhtar. (India vs Australia 1st ODI live score)
Speaking at the India Today Conclave 2023, Sachin recalled that he had a "sleepless night" before the match against Pakistan owing to the outside noise.
"I had a sleepless night before the match because you know India and Pakistan is always a big game. When people got to know they had started talking about it, saying 'this game India have to win no matter what happens in other matches'. So, I said what do you mean? There was that pressure, expectations were there," said Tendulkar.
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It was a Pool A match. Pakistan opener Saeed Anwar's century took the team to 273 for 7. In response, Sachin scored 98 off 75 and got able assistance from Rahul Dravid, who scored an unbeaten 44, and Yuvraj Singh with his fifty.
But the moment that stood out was the six against Akhtar in just the second over of the innings. An outside off delivery and Sachin, who initially thought of leaving it, reached out, and executed the upper cut that took the ball high over the ropes for a six.
"These kind of shots are not planned, when you see the ball and have time to play then you go for it. That's exactly what happened. I saw that the ball was a little bit outside the off stump and it was short," he said.
India had wrapped up the chase in 45.4 overs with the unbeaten century stand between Dravid and Yuvraj driving India to a win. Sachin was named the Player of the match for his knock. The team had eventually reached the final where they had lost to Australia.