The 2006 Faisalabad Test between India and Pakistan was a dull and boring draw. It was a high-scoring affair on a flat deck in which as many as 6 centuries were scored.
From India’s point of view, MS Dhoni’s maiden Test ton was a big positive as the wicketkeeper batsman smashed 148 off 153 balls to help his team pile up 603 in the first innings after Pakistan posted 588.
Dhoni’s century was part of a 210-run stand for the sixth wicket with Irfan Pathan, who scored 90.
Speaking to Sports Tak on Instagram Live, Pathan recently recalled an interesting incident from that Test match, when his ploy of sledging Pakistan’s speedster Shoaib Akhtar helped Dhoni focus on his game.
“When I was coming out to bat, Akhtar was bowling at a rapid pace of 150-160 kph. I went down and joined Dhoni and asked how’s the pitch is behaving, he responded by saying, ‘nothing much, you just bat’,” Irfan said.
“I faced Akhtar’s first ball and it was a bouncer and couldn’t even see the ball. Somehow we tried to negate his spell. We tried building our partnership and after sometime, Akhtar again came for a new spell,” he added.
Explaining the tactic to counter Shoaib, Pathan said: “Akhtar was sledging. I told Dhoni ‘I will sledge Akhtar and you just laugh at him’ and Dhoni agreed to it. Akhtar continued sledging us and the ball started to reverse.”
“That was the time, I sledged Akhtar saying ‘will you be able to bowl with the same intensity in the next spell?’. Akhtar responded angrily by saying ‘you talk too much’. He somehow completed that spell and that was how we drew that Test,” he further stated.