The remarkable game of cricket between India and Pakistan at The Oval on Sunday (June 18) turned ugly when a clash between the rival fans left six police officers injured in Leicester. The communities in Britain with India and Pakistan origins live and often socialise together but the age-old rivalry between the two neighbours came to the fore after Pakistan’s unexpected and stunning 180-runs win over India in the Champions Trophy final.
As per a report in Leicester Mercury, the fans clashed at Leicester’s Belgrave Road which was blocked immediately. The Indian and Pakistani fans waved their national flags and threw missiles at each other, prompting the police to take an immediate action. The news report claimed that an investigation has been launched to find the miscreants.
“There were thousands of India cricket fans in Belgrave Road preparing to celebrate the victory. The result was obviously disappointing, but people were still in high spirits and dancing and singing,” an Indian fan was quoted as saying by the news outlet.
The fan further claimed that the altercation broke after some Pakistan fans allegedly began driving up and down the street waving the Pakistan flag and honking horns.
“I saw one India fan approach one of the cars and an argument took place,” he said.
“The man then appeared to strike the driver before running off. There was about 40 of them (Pakistani fans). The two sets of supporters began taunting each other and then things got out of hand. It was shocking really as there were women, children and elderly people among the crowds,” he added.
Rob Nixon, Assistant Chief Constable of Leicestershire Police, confirmed that six officers were injured in the disorder.
“It’s really disappointing that a minority of people chose to indulge in this behaviour which caused injuries and traffic disruption to thousands of motorists as well as to pedestrians.
“Six police officers received minor injuries as they attempted to stop the disorder,” he said.