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The beginning of the greatest rivalry

16th October 1952 was the day when one of the greatest rivalries in cricket made its first appearance. 1952 was a busy year for Indian cricket compared to other years in that era.

Last updated: 16.10.2019
India vs Pakistan 1952 | Sports Social Blog

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16th October 1952 was the day when one of the greatest rivalries in cricket made its first appearance. 1952 was a busy year for Indian cricket compared to other years in that era. England was touring India from the winter of 1951 and the series got over in February with India winning their first-ever Test match in Chennai.

The home series followed by a not so successful return tour of England and they were back home by September. By then, the board had agreed to play a 3-test series with a neighbour Pakistan. The independence and partition related saga had passed five years and things cooled down relatively. Hence the Government of the two countries thought this could be a good time to start cricketing ties.

For Pakistan, this was their first-ever Test match. Still, they could produce a good team under the captaincy of Abdul Hafeez Kardar who earlier had played Test cricket for India. Amir Elahi was the other player in the eleven with prior Test experience for India. Rest nine players made their Test debut and it included future greats like Hanif Mohammad, Fazal Mahmood, and Nazar Mohammad.


For India, 41-year-old Lala Amarnath was back as captain. Vinoo Mankad was the biggest star in the squad along with Vijay Hazare, Polly Umrigar, Pankaj Roy and Ghulam Ahmed. Interestingly India also had Gul Mohammad who would later play for Pakistan.

Batting first after winning the toss, India posted 372 runs in 139.2 overs of the four-day match. Hemu Adhikari and Ghulam Ahmed added 109 runs for the tenth wicket which was an Indian record. Ahmed scored 50. Earlier Hazare also made a significant contribution of 76. For Pakistan Amir Elahi took four wickets.

Pakistani openers made a good start and reached 64 before Nazar Mohammad was run-out. It was a lucky break for India and immediately Mankad picked up two wickets to make it 65/3. Vinoo was in great form and kept picking up wickets in regular intervals. Hanif Mohammad scored 51 but batsmen number three to eleven contributed just 62 runs in total as Mankad picked up 8/52. Pakistan was all out for 150 and was forced to follow on.

In the second innings also Pakistan did not bat well. Losing Hanif early was a big blow for them as Amarnath bowled him. Pakistan kept losing wickets at regular intervals once Mankad came to attack. This time Ghulam Ahmed also joined the party and the spinners picked up the rest of the nine wickets among themselves. For Pakistan captain, Kardar top scored with 43 and Imtiaz Ahmed scored 41 as they were all out for 152 and lost the Test match by an innings and 70 Runs.

Vinoo Mankad finished with 13 wickets for 131 runs and was the star in India’s second Test win. Pakistan came back strongly to win the second Test in Lucknow but India won the series 2-1 thanks to their win in the third Test in Mumbai. The other two Tests were drawn. This started a The glorious rivalry between two Asian cricketing giants which would give birth to many cricketing legends in years to come.

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