‘While playing for India, I used to interact with Shahid Afridi’: Ashok Dinda’s interesting take on India vs Pakistan
Ashok Dinda’s India career halted at 21 matches but during the three years that he played for the national team, the former fast bowler played some interesting matches. Dinda, who announced his retirement from all forms of cricket on Tuesday, revealed some interesting anecdotes regarding the rivalry shared between India and Pakistan players.
Dinda played three ODIs and two T20Is against Pakistan in 2012-2013 and admitted that although players from both teams would be fierce rivals while playing off the field, they shared a rather pleasant relation.
“Players from both nations catch up with each other after the match. But while on the field, they act as if they don’t know their compatriots. This is one thing which I really liked about India-Pakistan contests,” he told SportsKeeda.
“It was a different experience. Since childhood, I have seen India-Pakistan matches as really feisty and competitive encounters. And here, I have played quite a few matches against Pakistan.
“It is a different experience, different ball game altogether, different one-on-one contests, going into India-Pakistan matches feel like going to war. No team wants to lose, hence a different motivation seeps into the entire squad.”
Dinda, who picked up 420 First-Class wickets from 116 matches and 29 wickets for India, in fact reveals that he was friends with some of the former Pakistan players, with certain friendships going back to playing with their players during the inaugural edition of the IPL for Kolkata Knight Riders.
“I have many friends from the Pakistan team. Mohammad Hafeez knows me really well, we are good friends. Players who played for the Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL 2008 like Salman Butt, Umar Gul, Shoaib Akhtar, everybody knows me. In fact, while playing for India, I used to interact with Shahid Afridi as well,” Dinda added.