World Cup Shocks

ICC Cricket World Cup 2011

Zimbabwe beat Australia by 13 runs
Group match, Trent Bridge, June 9 1983
Long before he made his name as an innovative coach, Duncan Fletcher was a leader of considerable repute for Zimbabwe. He was the architect behind their historic win over Australia in what was his country’s first World Cup match. An unbeaten 69 helped Zimbabwe recover from 94 for five to post a respectable 239 for six off 60 overs at Trent Bridge on the opening day of the 1983 tournament. Fletcher then took 4-42 with his medium-pace to stymie Australia’s chase, and a side containing the likes of Allan Border, Kepler Wessels, Rod Marsh and David Hookes fell narrowly short.


India beat West Indies by 43 runs
Final, Lord’s, June 25 1983
India, far from the one-day heavyweights they are now, had won a solitary World Cup game in two tournaments leading up to the 1983 edition. Yet they defied the history books and the odds in spectacular fashion, beating England to set up a final showdown with West Indies. Once again, India were expected to have little chance against the giants of world cricket and World Cup winners in 1975 and 1979. Despite managing just 183, brilliant fielding and tight bowling - epitomised by Madan Lal’s 3-12 - saw India record an historic win which lives long in the memory of fans in their homeland and beyond.

Kenya beat West Indies by 73 runs
Group match, Pune, February 29 1996
West Indies may not have been the side they once were, and they were far from a happy bunch during the 1996 World Cup as Richie Richardson’s tenure drew to an end. However, there was hardly a soul in India who predicted anything other than a resounding defeat for Kenya when the sides met in the group stages. All appeared to be going according to plan as Kenya were restricted to 166 - extras were the top-scorer with 37 - but a woeful West Indies were shot out for a scarcely believable 93 inside 36 overs. Only two batsmen reached double figures.


Bangladesh beat Pakistan by 62 runs
Group match, Northampton, May 31 1999
Bangladesh’s record of two wins in 34 one-day internationals (against Kenya and Scotland at that) hardly inspired confidence ahead of the dead group clash with Pakistan, who were chasing a fifth successive victory in the competition. The form book was turned emphatically on its head as Bangladesh withstood the pace and fire of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar to make 223 for nine. Shahid Afridi fell to the fifth ball of Pakistan’s reply - one of three wickets for Khaled Mahmud - and they never threatened Bangladesh’s total.

Kenya beat Sri Lanka by 53 runs
Group match, Nairobi, February 24 2003
Kenya’s surprise march to the semi-finals owed much to New Zealand’s refusal to play in Nairobi due to security concerns, but they would not have got there without their stunning win over Sri Lanka. Kennedy Otieno provided the early impetus in an apparently attainable total of 210 for nine after Kenya were asked to bat. But it was in the field where they excelled, fielding “like lion cubs, backed up in gangs”, according to Wisden. Leg-spinner Collins Obuya ripped the heart out of the Sri Lanka middle order with 5-24 to hasten their slide to a pitiful 157.


Ireland beat Pakistan by three wickets (D/L method)
Group match, Jamaica, March 17 2007
A match that was overshadowed by Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer’s death hours later was shocking in its own right. Ireland, still two years away from being granted full ODI status by the International Cricket Council, showcased their talent while dumping Pakistan out of the competition. Set 133 to win on a damp surface, Ireland were indebted to Niall O’Brien’s wonderful 72. He responded with aggression to a rain delay which checked Ireland’s momentum, and they overcame the loss of three wickets in seven balls to scrape home.

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