World Cup match brings together leaders of Pakistan, India for 'cricket diplomacy'
Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani (left) speaks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India at Wednesday's match.
March 30th, 2011
09:52 PM ET

World Cup match brings together leaders of Pakistan, India for 'cricket diplomacy'

India celebrated on Wednesday after beating Pakistan in the World Cup of cricket, a match that brought together two arch-rivals on the field and the leaders of their countries in the stands for some "cricket diplomacy."

Pakistani Prime Minister Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani arrived in India Wednesday to watch 2011 ICC World Cup second semi-final with his Indian counterpart, Manmohan Singh, as the nuclear neighbors try to repair ties wounded by the 2008 terror attacks on Mumbai.

Politics nearly threatened to take the focus off the high-pitched cricket match, which prompted early closures of thousands of businesses in Mohali, the city hosting the game.

Gilani's visit came a day after his country agreed in principle to allow a tour by an Indian commission in connection with the investigations into the Mumbai assault blamed on Pakistani militant groups. In talks Tuesday in New Delhi, Indian and Pakistani home secretaries also pledged to set up a "hotline" on terror threats.

The Times of India noted that Singh had been "jittery" over the possibility that their meeting in the stands of the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium would receive "more-than-necessary coverage by an intrusive media."

But once the match began, "the broadcasters obliged" by keeping television cameras away from the section hosting the dignitaries," the online publication reported.

"The two leaders had enough time to themselves apart from applauding the odd boundary or the fall of a wicket. It was only at the end of the match after the last Pakistani wicket had fallen that the cameras showed the two leaders seated next to each other," the Times reported.

The South Asian rivals, which have fought three wars since the blood-soaked partition of the Asian subcontinent in 1947, have in the past used cricket as a platform to ease relations.

The win means India will play Sri Lanka in the final match in Mumbai on Saturday.

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Filed under: India • Pakistan • Sports
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Sunar From Indonesia Phone: 628993362379 Web:

    mumbai attack is very horrable, that al-qaedo inspired by the attack to lunch in other country

    March 30, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Un named sources

    Hello? Obama b.s. Press alert. What c.i.a.? Sounds good though.. does it not.. Leaked secrets for leaky oil politics. WHAT c.i.a..? You mean Rupert Fox is arming the country? If it sounds good and like leaky secrets then what music can it be? headline.."How the French won the war".. But not really. 20 years from now we find out ghaddafi lives in alaska. F.o.i.a... Censored.

    March 30, 2011 at 10:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • S1N

      Wow. I think you're in the wrong place. The lithium pills and tin foil hats are now kept in the next section over.

      March 30, 2011 at 11:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. How do I get valet validated

    Well good for would think this would trigger one of them to press the red button.

    March 30, 2011 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Dingo

    This match was watched by an estimated global audience of around 1 billion (yes, with a 'B') which makes it possibly the single most watched live television event in the history of the World. Glad it made it as news to the US (albeit with the focus on the political aspect of it)

    March 31, 2011 at 12:22 am | Report abuse |
  5. Nishant

    more people watched this game then any other game EVER....yet it hardly made it into news....east news doesnt matter to west.

    March 31, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
    • termlimits

      Another reason why we, the west, should stay the h ell out of all that c rap over there. Besides, that boring soccer world cup is on the tele! LOL!

      March 31, 2011 at 8:07 am | Report abuse |
  6. Sans of Time

    For those that don't know: Americans don't take to futbol/soccer, because it's a silly nanny sport where all the players fake injury to avoid allowing the other team to score. I don't like when Hockey/basketball players try to draw penalties either. If you can't play then get off the field, but don't make yourself look talentless and wussified at the same time.

    March 31, 2011 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
  7. Greg

    Here are two more pro-Western right-wing stooges waiting to take orders from the right-wing thugs in Washington. These bozoes really stick together!!!

    March 31, 2011 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
  8. bramfranz

    thanks for the information. Your website was incredible,,,!

    September 15, 2011 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |