India and Pakistan have begun two days of diplomatic talks amid a surge in good will before a seminal cricket match between the two sides.
Both cricket-crazed countries are abuzz with excitement for the World Cup semifinal match Wednesday. Officials and newspapers anticipate the so-called "gentleman's game" will boost peace talks that were frozen after the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.
The prime ministers from both countries plan to watch the match together in the Indian border state of Punjab. Before then, officials are holding talks Monday and Tuesday in New Delhi.
The U.S. had pressed the nuclear-armed rivals to restart peace efforts in hopes that reducing tensions would free Pakistan to focus on its fight against Taliban militants.