IT WAS like bringing back the memories of India’s win over Pakistan in the 2011 ODI World Cup semi-final played at PCA Stadium, Mohali, on Sunday as India scored a six-wicket win over Australia to storm into the semi-finals of the World T20.
While fans jostled to enter the stadium with valid tickets, those who got in the stadium were lucky to watch India win.
“We came to see Virat bat and that’s what we got to see. Virat showed the same spirit against Pakistan in Kolkata. He played a better innings today against Australia. Even though we restricted Australia to 160, it was a tough situation. And the way Virat countered Shane Watson was terrific to watch. Yuvraj also batted well after the injury and it is good to see the local lad perform,” said Mohit Sharma, a BPO employee who had come to see the match which was a virtual quarter-final.
While BCCI Secretary Anurag Thakur and Haryana and Punjab Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki were among the prominent people who had come to watch the match, there were fans who had come from all over India to watch the game.
As the Indian women’s team was defeated by West Indies in the afternoon match played on Sunday, the fans had to wait for more than three hours to get into the stadium.
“The women’s team also played well against West Indies and maybe that set the tone for the Indian men’s team. Moga girl Harmanpreet picked up four wickets and then Punjabi munda Virat Kohli also played a match-winning knock of 82 runs. Mohali has been a lucky ground for the Indian team and Dhoni also showed his class. We really wish that he wins the world cup,” said Madhu Airee, a housewife who had come to watch the match from Ludhiana.
Horrid time for fans
IT was a horrid time for more than 5,000 fans as they waited with tickets in hand, with the police and PCA officials closing the gates at 6.45 pm. Some of the fans got a chance to sneak in the stadium as the officials opened the gates in gaps of half an hour each and some of them even climbed the stadium outer wall to get inside the stadium with tickets. “We had come to watch the match from Delhi but there were huge queues outside the stadium at 6 pm. The police were not letting fans with tickets enter the stadium. The police officials were letting some fans inside and not allowing fans with tickets. We lost our purse and phone in the rush outside Gate No. 4 as there was no control over the public. Some fans even climbed the walls and most of the fans were let in without tickets,” said Lubhanshu Chadha, a Merchant Navy officer who had come to see the match.