India - Pakistan: citizens' view25 Mar 2004
So the India - Pakistan One Day International series ended yesterday with a lot of cheering and support for both the teams by cricket-lovers from both the nations. It's great that India won the first series in Pakistan, also proving the people wrong who called the Indian team as 'chokers', following the recent trend of performing well throughout some series but losing in the all-important final. This should give the Indian team a lot of confidence and joy. Thanks, you've done us all proud.
The Times of India today has a report on the hospitality extended to the Indians by Pakistanis: "When you say you?re Indian, strange things happen. Faces break into smiles, doors fly open, rickshaw drivers ask you home, cyber cafes waive away hours of use, tea is called for, Pepsi bottles are uncorked, invitations to lunch and dinner are proffered."
I sure am disappointed to not have experienced this first-hand, but I'm sure this isn't a special case. I hope there'll be many more such tournaments and events and I'll get to visit Pakistan some time in the future. Cricket really is a passion in both the nations and the people from both the countries have proved that we have nothing against each other -- we love the sport, we love the players and we love each other.
It's also heartening to know that the leaders of the two nations are working towards better ties and curbing the terrorist activities along the border.
I now really hope the Pakistan team tours India and gives us the opportunity to shower our affection and hospitality on them.