One teenager making another celebrate: Sachin Tendulkar’s cricket World Cup journey against Pakistan tees off © Getty Images
One teenager making another celebrate: Sachin Tendulkar’s cricket World Cup journey against Pakistan tees off © Getty Images

After managing to avoid each other for four editions of World Cup cricket, India and Pakistan finally met at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on March 4, 1992. Abhishek Mukherjee recalls the memories from his teens when he celebrated India’s first World Cup win over Pakistan. India vs Pakistan Live Score

I was not amused. In fact, I was ballistic. Why, oh why did they have to schedule the World Cup just before my Class IX annual exams? Of course, we had the pre-examination days to prepare; but honestly, nobody studied when World Cup cricket was around, did they? That was blasphemy. Stories on India vs Pakistan, Cricket World Cup clashes.

Cable television was not very common in your average middle-class Indian family in 1992, so we had to be content with Doordarshan (whose coverage was restricted to India’s matches, four other league matches, the two semi-finals and the final). When I put into perspective that we had got to see all matches in an earlier World Cup, I feel I had every right to be infuriated. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: SCHEDULE & MATCH DETAILS

I have vivid memories of the day. My father was away at work. My brother, poor kid, was too young to have exams, and had to go to school. My mother had (taken?) a day off, and the match started off with her sitting on the bed and me resting my back against the sofa, with KC Nag’s algebra book, an exercise book, and a Linc Starline pen. I was supposed to do algebra while watching the match (do not ask). PREVIEW: India vs Pakistan ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 Match at Adelaide

Unlike most kids, my passion for the game was triggered by my mother, who had probably watched more televised cricket in the 1980s and 1990s than most Indian women of her age. Then the mega-serials took over. Such is the world. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: Complete Coverage

They dropped Ravi Shastri that day after his ridiculously slow performance against Australia in the previous match. Some kid called Ajay Jadeja opened batting with Krishnamachari Srikkanth. Poor Srikkanth was not in his usual self against Wasim Akram and Aaqib Javed, and perished after a painstaking display.

Mohammad Azharuddin started off brightly, then edged one and walked. Jadeja held fort but fell for 46, and when Mushtaq Ahmed dismissed Vinod Kambli and Sanjay Manjrekar off successive deliveries, I went back to quadratic equations. But then they counterattacked.

Sachin Tendulkar and Kapil Dev, two of the three greatest cricketers India have ever produced, hit back with gusto. Imran Khan brought himself back, but the onslaught continued. The Linc Starline pen got capped as Tendulkar treated Aaqib like a spinner and slog-swept him. Kapil hit a monstrous six, Kiran More sacrificed his wicket for Tendulkar, and India finished with 216 for seven off 49 overs. ICC Cricket World Cup 2015: POINTS TABLE

They opened with a resolute-looking Aamer Sohail, accompanied by a thin, frail kid called Inzamam-ul-Haq (who would have thunk?). He fell, along with Zahid Fazal, and then THAT MAN JAVED MIANDAD walked out to join Sohail.

Miandad never looked the tensed in the slightest. He guided Sohail, who did the bulk of the scoring, and the three Indian seamers (Kapil, Manoj Prabhakar, and Javagal Srinath) were scored off quite comfortably. Tendulkar and Venkathapaty Raju were brought on, but the runs kept coming.

Then something strange happened. More had been appealing incessantly, to the extent that he managed to do the unthinkable — get under Miandad’s skin. Miandad was not amused: he jumped about, bat in hand, in possibly what he thought was a perfect mimicry of More’s antics.

However, Pakistan seemed largely untroubled and crossed 100 for the loss of just the two initial wickets. At this point Ma gave up (she definitely ranks among the five most pessimistic cricket-watchers in the history of the game) and asked me in a stern voice to go back to quadratic equations.

And then, things suddenly changed. Tendulkar had Sohail caught, and the 15-year old in me saw a glimpse of hope. My mother kept reminding me that Pakistan had a strong line-up. Who cared? Saleem Malik, after an aggressive start, edged one; Imran got tangled up in a mix-up and got run out for a duck; Wasim tried to heave Raju out of Sydney and got stumped; but THAT MAN still remained.

Then the big wicket came: Srinath pitched one up, Miandad missed the line, and the ball crashed on to the stumps.

I clearly remember how I reacted. A small stool got kicked, and Mr Nag’s iconic creation soared up in the air, accompanied by the almost empty exercise book and Linc Starline. Under normal circumstances this would have called for a bashing, but my mother had stood up on the floor and was clapping and laughing.

The rest ended in a whirlwind, the seamers coming back to clean up the tail, and Pakistan were bowled out for 177. I was ecstatic, but my mother was on a different planet altogether. She had started calling up relatives and colleagues, and was yelling at (I am sure of this) an illegal volume.

Brief scores:

India 216 for 7 in 49 overs (Ajay Jadeja 46, Sachin Tendulkar 54*; Mushtaq Ahmed 3 for 59) beat Pakistan 173 in 48.1 overs (Aamer Sohail 62, Javed Miandad 40) by 43 runs.

Man of the match: Sachin Tendulkar.

(Abhishek Mukherjee is the Chief Editor and Cricket Historian at CricketCountry. He blogs here and can be followed on Twitter here.)