Cricket in India creates much more excitement and has a greater fan following than any other game. In fact, no other sport in India can claim the position of cricket regarding popularity and revenue generation. The cricket mania in India would leave a stranger amazed. From children faking sickness to bunking schools to office-goers taking a break from work, cricket has unified several sections of the society over a number of generations towards a common goal. Go anywhere in India, and you can spot a bunch of boys taking out time from their busy schedule and playing cricket.
The madness grows manifold when there is Cricket World Cup going around. Cricket World cup started in 1975, following the success of domestic one-day competitions, the six Test-playing nations (England, Australia, New Zealand, West Indies, India, and Pakistan) were joined by Sri Lanka and East Africa in the first World Cup, which was hosted in England. Since then we have witnessed some of the greatest and best cricket world cup matches in all these years. DSport looks at such memorable World Cup clashes in the cricket history.
The last man standing (Australia vs South Africa 1999):
A team bearing an infamous tag of ‘chokers’ at ICC event level, South Africa have not yet tasted a World Cup victory. For the first four editions of World Cup, they weren’t a part of ICC and hence not eligible to participate. Thus they have played in seven editions so far (from 1992 to 2015 World Cup) and yet to win one. But there is one event that could have changed the fate of the South African cricket team if Klusener could have taken that one run.
Australia had set a mediocre target of 214 in 50 Overs for South Africa. The Proteas had initial blows but were still pretty much the favourites at 145/4 after 40 Overs with Rhodes and Kallis on strike and with Klusener, Boucher still to come. And not to forget Pollock too had the potential to bat. But call it destiny or whatever things just twisted. Shane Warne’s magic left South African team scrambling for refuge, leaving the last man Allan Donald and Lance Klusener on the field, trying to figure out a way to get the win. With one run left to get from three balls, Allan Donald’s run-out saw the match end on a tie, and Australia proceeded to the final. And Yes, They Choked
David taking on Goliath (India vs West Indies 1983):
Not many one-day internationals are remembered frame-by-frame but it is certain that for the lucky few who watched it live and for the rest who have grown up seeing archival footage on television, each of India’s games at the 1983 World Cup are kept in a special memory cell.
1983 World Cup holds a special memory in the hearts of every Indian cricket fan. Batting first, India put up a not so impressive total of 183 runs. But then Kapil Dev took a brilliant catch to dismiss Viv Richards, the Indian bowlers started dismantling away with vigor the batting order of West Indies’, and history was created, India became the only second nation to win a world cup.
Fight for the maiden cup (Australia vs England 1987):
England was chasing the ceremonial total of 255 on Eden Garden and were well poised at 135 for 2 when Alan Border dismissed Gatting. After that the middle order collapsed, leaving the team in total despair. Allan Lamb(45) fought hard but 17 runs off the last over turned out to be a bit too much for the Englishmen. Craig McDermott bowled the final over and secured a seven-run win, the closest margin in World Cup final history, for Allan Border-led Australia. The Border era was up and running.
Million dollar Brandes (England vs Zimbabwe 1992):
It may seem like a script of some sports movie where the team struggling to put a defendable score on the board while the opponent team drunk in their own condescension, failed miserably. Speaking with Zimbabwe captain Dave Houghton during the lunch break, Boycott disdainfully dismissed his side’s chances of making anything of the match. England bowlers bundled out Zimbabwe for 134, the target shouldn’t have posed any problems for the in-form England side. However, they ran into an inspired Eddo Brandes. He dismissed Graham Gooch off the first ball of the innings and then broke their middle order by getting Alan Lamb, Robin Smith, and Graeme Hick. Though Neil Fairbrother and Alec Stewart tried to post a recovery, the Zimbabwe bowlers hit back to bowl them out, 10 runs short of the target. Brandes walked away with the man of the match award.
O’Brien The Great (Ireland vs England 2011):
Kevin O Brien will live this moment forever and Ireland will always call this victory as one of their greatest World Cup victory. He smashed 113 off 63 balls as Ireland recovered from 111-5 to overhaul their target of 328 with five balls to spare and three wickets in hand. Ireland secured their greatest victory and stunned the English ascendancy with the fastest hundred in World Cup history. This thrilling encounter went on to become one of the best cricket world cup matches ever.
These are the best World Cup Matches we have picked for you. Matches with close finish, with surprising results and nail-biting moments. Tell us your most memorable world cup match in the comment section. Live The game