2004 series against Pakistan was really special, recalls Ashish Nehra

no photo
 |

BCCI

2004 series against Pakistan was really special, recalls Ashish Nehra

no photo

SportsCafe Desk

06/16/2019

Ashish Nehra has revealed that the 2004 bilateral series against Pakistan on foreign soil was a really special outing from a personal viewpoint for him. India ended up winning the Test series 2-1 and the ODI series by 3-2 as the likes of Virender Sehwag,  Rahul Dravid and Zaheer Khan ran riot. 

Former India pacer Ashish Nehra made his India ODI debut in February 1999 against Sri Lanka. The Delhi-born pacer played a total of 120 ODIs and 17 Test matches for the Indian national team over the course of a career during which he struggled to stay fit with recurring injuries. 

Nehra was involved in two matches against Pakistan at previous World Cups (2003 and 2011) and was on the winning side on both occasions.  However, the Royal Challengers Bangalore bowling coach highlighted the 2004 bilateral series against Pakistan as the most 'special' affair between both rival countries. 

"There have been a lot of interesting India-Pakistan matches that I've been a part of, whether it's the 2003 world cup game in Centurion when Sachin Tendulkar batted superbly, or the 2011 world cup semis. But outside of the world cups, the 2004 series was very special. India were touring Pakistan after a really long time. It was a brilliant series, can never forget that. I will put it at par with the world cups. Whether it was Lahore or Rawalpindi, you could see Indian flags everywhere. The Pakistanis had taken very good care of the Indian fans who had travelled to watch the matches there," Nehra was quoted as saying to Cricbuzz. 

India ended up winning the Test series by a margin of 2-1 where Virender Sehwag was chosen as player of the series. They followed that up with a hard-fought 3-2 win in the ODI series which saw Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq elected as player of the series. 

Nehra, who picked 201 wickets in the ODI and Test format for India, added that the Pakistani players loved to play hilarious pranks off the field. 

"Off the field, the Pakistani players liked to joke a lot, and had a lot of pranksters in the team. We used to play pranks on Naved ul Hasan. He didn't have hair earlier, so we used to keep pulling his leg when he got them back. "Rana ji, kaha se baal lagwa ke aaye ho?"

"I got along well with everyone but there were certain players in their side that I bonded really well with - Arshad Khan, Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik. Since I can also speak a bit of Punjabi, I have had a lot of good time with them. Harbhajan used to bond really well with these guys. By being around them, I also picked up a bit of Punjabi," Nehra added.

Cricket FootBall Kabaddi

Basketball Hockey

SportsCafe

Cricket FootBall Kabaddi

Basketball Hockey

SportsCafe

Cricket FootBall Kabaddi

Basketball Hockey

SportsCafe

SHOW COMMENTS