What is a rivalry in cricket?
The simple answer to this is when two teams lock horns with each other and the outcome is something to watch out for.
For instance, recently, India and Pakistan met each other in the round-robin fixture of the World Cup 2019. India might have gone in the match as favourites but the build-up behind this game was full of intensity. Fans had gathered in large number at the stadium and other ones were in front of their television screens at least in the first half.
You can check here all the India vs Pakistan clashes in World Cups and the results.
But can we call an India-Bangladesh match, a rivalry match?
Bangladesh has had some decent outings against India. They defeated India in 2007 edition of the World Cup in group-stage in 2012 Asia Cup and a series win in 2016. Other than this, Bangladesh cricketers and their media have been more vocal and immature. A number of instances are there to support this statement.
In 2016, Bangladesh wicket-keeper batsman Mushfiqur Rahim got trolled for making early celebrations during their World T20 match against India. Bangladesh required 10 off 5 when Rahim struck a couple of boundaries on the trot to reduce the equation to 2 of 3. But he failed to take his team over the line, courtesy a filed attempt buy him and Mahmudullah to go for the glory and some brilliance in the field by MS Dhoni. India won that match by just 1 run.
Later in that tournament, Mushfiqur was in the news once again not for scoring runs but for trolling India on social media. After India’s loss to West Indies in the semi-final at home. He had later deleted the post but by then, the screenshots had gone viral.
Leaving behind the cricketers, Bangladesh media went one step ahead as a morphed picture of fast bowler Taskin Ahmed holding Dhoni’s head went viral. These kinds of gestures and trolls could have been overlooked if they had backed themselves with some tournament-winning performances.
The fans, spectators, media and cricketers themselves need to learn that showing disrespect or trolling someone doesn’t show you passion but what you do on the field does.
India skipper Virat Kohli is the most animated cricketer of the modern era. He has his own way of celebrating a wicket or showing dismay to a certain event during the match. But as soon as he out of the field, Kohli is a changed man. He is more calm and composed.
Do you remember India vs Bangladesh match in the 2015 World Cup?
Fast bowler Rubel Hossain had scalped Kohli for 3 runs and had a wild celebration. Later, eventually, Bangladesh lost the match by 109 runs. Rubel was the penultimate dismissal of the match. But Kohli’s reaction to his departure was just a decent one. He just gave a smirk and shook his head.
In 2018, India had to face Bangladesh again in the final of the Nidahas Trophy played in Sri Lanka. It was a nailing biting match which ended with a last-ball six by Dinesh Karthik, winning the match for India home by 4 wickets.
Wrapping things up
In the on-going World Cup, Bangladesh has had some decent outings. They defeated South Africa and scored heavily against Australia. But a defeat against them is still considered an “upset”.
So there are areas where Bangladesh need to concentrate because the Men in Blue are in this competition as a powerful force and not a team who is still trying to leave a mark on the cricket world. Their portfolio, as well as the head-to-head clash between the two sides, say it all.
Surely, an India-Bangladesh match isn’t a rivalry and moreover, if in case India loses this game, it would be nothing but an upset.
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