Virat Kohli-led Team India will begin their hunt for a second ICC T20 World Cup trophy on October 24, when they take on 2009 champions and arch-rivals, Pakistan in their 2021 tournament opener in Dubai. The two teams have been pooled in Group 2 of Super12 alongside Pakistan, New Zealand, Afghanistan, Scotland and a second qualifier from Group A. They have previously faced each other five times in the T20 World Cup, going all the way back to the inaugural edition in 2007. Ahead of the high-octane clash on Sunday, we take a look at all their previous meetings in the tournament's history.
2007 - Group Stage
India and Pakistan played out a thrilling game in Durban in the final Group-D game at the inaugural T20 World Cup with the match ending in a tie. Robin Uthappa scripted India's fightback with his 39-ball 50 after a brilliant new-ball spell from Mohammad Asif (4/18) skittled the top order. India then bowled and fielded impressively to defend the total before Pakistan bounced back in the death overs riding on a 35-ball 53 from Misbah-ul-Haq, bringing down the equation to one required off two. However, he failed to finish the task with the match ending in a tie which called for a bowl-out, as per the then tournament rules. India won the tie-breaker 3-0 with Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh and Robin Uthappa all hitting the stumps.
2007 - Final
10 days after their Durban thriller, India and Pakistan played out one of the most memorable games in World T20 history, this time at the Wanderers. Gautam Gambhir's 54-ball 75 dragged India to 157 for five, but it was the bowlers who put Pakistan out of contention for a win, bringing down the equation to 54 required from 24 balls with three wickets in hand. However, it was Misbah once again who threatened to make the improbable possible. Pakistan eventually needed six from four balls, but an error in judgment left their fans disappointed. Looking to avoid a last-ball finish, Misbah moved across to scoop the Joginder Sharma delivery to fine leg but it landed safely in the hands of Sreesanth. India won by five runs to lift the World T20 trophy.
2012 - Group Stage
Five years after those thrilling encounters, India and Pakistan met again at the World T20, but this time it was a lopsided contest with the Men in Blue scripting a comfortable eight-wicket victory. A clinical bowling show bundled out Pakistan for 128, the lowest total in the Super Eight stage of that edition. Virat Kohli, who only a few days back scored 183 against Pakistan in the Asia Cup, single-handedly completed the chase for India with his 61-ball 78.
2014 - Group Stage
Another stroll in the park for India as Pakistan, trying too many things in vain, showed similar signs of anxiousness. The spinners picked three wickets at an economy rate of 5.25 in 12 overs as Pakistan finished with 130 for seven. India comfortably chased down the target in 18.3 overs with Shikhar Dhawan (30), Virat Kohli (36*) and Suresh Raina (35*) all contributing equally.
2016 - Group Stage
The last game played between the two sides in World T20 was in Kolkata, five years back. The rain had reduced the game to 18 overs but did not dampen the spirits. Shoaib Malik and Umar Akmal's late blitz added 48 runs off 32 balls, yet Pakistan finished with just 118 for five. Mohammad Sami and Mohammad Amir picked three wickets between themselves to rattle the top order before Yuvraj Singh soaked in the pressure to score a 23-ball 24, ably assisting Kohli (37 off 55) to stitch a match-winning partnership of 61 runs as India chased down the target in 15.5 overs.