On this day, 25 years ago, Canada hosted its first-ever cricket match played between Pakistan and India at the Toronto Cricket Club. Interestingly, 750 spectators turned up to watch the match. It was the first match of the five-match ODI series between the arch-rivals with the series named Sahara Cup.
Pakistan batted first in the first ODI and scored 170 runs for the loss of nine wickets. Opened Saeed Anwar was the star performer with the bat. He scored 46 runs off 34 balls, including seven fours. Besides, there was little contribution from the other batsmen. Ijaz Ahmed, though, played a good-looking knock of 35 runs off 50 balls.
India chased down the target quite comfortably in the end with 19 balls to spare. Sachin Tendulkar starred with the bat as he played a blistering knock of 89 runs off as many deliveries, including nine fours and three sixes. Thanks to his name, India won that game by 8 wickets.
Pakistan bounced back in the second game as they beat India by 2 wickets. India won the third one-day international but Pakistan went to win the next two games and thereby won the series by a 3-2 margin.
For the unversed, Canada became an associate member of ICC in 1968. They have made appearances in the 2007 and 2011 World Cups. Though, since the introduction of the World Cricket League division structure, they haven’t had much success internationally. Thus far, they have played 77 one-day internationals, winning 17 and losing 58 matches. Ashish Bagai is their highest run-scorer with 1964 runs to his name at an average of 37.76.