MS Dhoni finishing the match with a six, the highlight as we look at the top moments from World Cup 2011.
“Dhoniiiiii…finishes off in style…a magnificent strike into the crowd…India lift the world cup after 28 years….the party starts in the dressing room…and, it’s an Indian Captain, who has been absolutely magnificent in the night of the final”.
This voice still echoes in my mind as I recollect the memories of the 2011 World Cup. The dream for which, Sachin Tendulkar waited for 24 years, the dream which carried the hopes of a billion people as MS Dhoni’s men scripted history on April 2, 2011.
While the tournament was mostly about Team India’s World Cup glory, there were some interesting moments too which made the tournament exciting to watch. So, let’s look at the top memorable moments from World Cup 2011.
ICC WORLD CUP 2011
Winners: India | Runners-up: Srilanka
Hosts: India, Bangladesh, and Srilanka
Player of the Tournament: Yuvraj Singh
Mat: 9 || Wkts: 15 || Runs: 362
#5: Virender Sehwag lit the tournament opener
India couldn’t have asked for a better start to their campaign as Virender Sehwag guided India to an amazing victory with his stupendous 175(140). Having put in to bat first, Virender Sehwag started with his trademark fashion, boundary, which he repeated in all the group stage matches he played.
Before the tournament, there was a lot of discussion on Sehwag’s statement that he wanted to bat for 50 overs. It certainly felt that way as he looked determined to score a big knock.
He started cautiously scoring 24 runs from his first 30 deliveries. However, Sehwag being Sehwag, he changed his gear quickly getting to his fifty in just 45 balls, century in just 94 balls and 150 in just 124 balls. His epic knock of 175(140) comprising of 14 fours and 5 Sixes finally ended in the 48th over.
We might say that once again Sehwag couldn’t play out the 50 overs, but that doesn’t take anything away from this epic knock from Sehwag.
#4: Kevin O’Brien Single-handedly mauled England
Not for the first time have Ireland caused a major upset in an ICC tournament. They did that by knocking out Pakistan in the 2007 World Cup. But, chasing more than 300, and that too against a bowling line-up comprising of Anderson, Broad, Swann, etc., is an incredible performance.
Chasing 328, the moment of the match came in the 25th over as Ireland were reeling at 111-5, and they needed a miracle to score another 227 in 25 overs. Kevin O’Brien did exactly that as he looked outrageous right from the start. Attack looked the only objective to him as he smashed 25 runs from the first 15 balls, 50 runs from first 30 balls, and 75 runs from his first 38 balls.
It looked a herculean effort from Kevin O’Brien as he got to his century in just 50 balls, making it the fastest century in World Cups. He ultimately got out on 113(63) with 13 fours and 6 maximums, however, Ireland were comfortably in the driving seat with RRR less than 6. Ireland eventually won with match with 5 balls to spare.
#3: Bangladesh’s Humiliation in their own Backyard
As a humiliation in their own backyard, West Indies bundled-out Bangladesh for their lowest ever ODI score. Batting first, Bangladesh were rocked back on the backfoot straightaway as Tamim Iqbal was sent back for a duck by Kemar Roach.
Moreover, Bangladesh didn’t seem to hold on the fort as they kept losing wicket after wicket. In the end, Bangladesh were bundled out for a humiliating score of 58 as Junaid Siddique top-scored with 25(27).
West Indies used only three bowlers as Sulieman Benn took 4 wickets while Kemar Roach and Darren Sammy took 3 wickets each. West Indies chased the target successfully with 9 wickets in hand and 226 balls remaining.
#2: India end Australia’s Dominant World Cup run
After 3 consecutive World Cup trophies, Australia went down the wire to India as India ended their dominant World Cup run by defeating them in the Quarterfinals of World Cup 2011.
Coming to the match, Australia won the toss, and chose to bat first. World Cup 2003 reminiscence was on the minds as Ricky Ponting once again looked determined to play longer innings. However, this wasn’t Australia’s team of 2003, which had so many superstars in it. Hence, even after Ricky Ponting’s fantastic century, Australia ended on a below-par score of 260-6 in 50 overs.
Chasing 261, India gave their 100% as Sachin and Gambhir struck valuable half-centuries while Virat Kohli played a supporting knock of 24. MS Dhoni, however, played a loose shot in the 38th over as India required another 74 runs from 75 balls with last recognized pair at the crease.
1 billion hopes rested on the shoulders of Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina, but the duo didn’t disappoint as Yuvraj Singh’s impeccable 57(65) and Raina’s valuable cameo of 34(28) guided India to a historic Quarter Final win against the mighty Aussies.
Smashing the winning runs, Yuvraj Singh broke on the pitch as he waved his bat in a frenzy of emotions.
#1: MS Dhoni and Gautam Gambhir, the Final Heroes
Cometh the hour, cometh the man as MS Dhoni, the captain guided India to a World Cup victory after 28 years as Gautam Gambhir played an equally important knock. MS Dhoni has had a horror of a tournament till then, but as they say, save best for the last, and MS Dhoni did exactly that.
Chasing 278, India had a horror start as they lost Virender Sehwag for a duck, and Sachin Tendulkar for 18 as India were struggling at 31-2.
Gautam Gambhir then led a fightback as he built a solid partnership with Virat Kohli. However, after the dismissal of Kohli, an unthinkable happened as Dhoni promoted himself at number 5 ahead of inform, Yuvraj Singh.
The form didn’t seem to affect Dhoni as him and Gauti led a solid foundation for the chase. Gauti eventually got out in the 42nd over for 97(122), however, he had already laid a solid foundation for Dhoni to finish the things.
The big moment of the match came in the 48th over against Nuwan Kulasekara as,
“Dhoniiiiii…finishes off in style…a magnificent strike into the crowd…..India lift the world cup after 28 years….the party starts in the dressing room…and, it’s an Indian Captain, who has been absolutely magnificent in the night of the final”
It was a night to remember for the Indian fans as MS Dhoni and his men scripted history.
— BCCI (@BCCI) April 2, 2017
So, these are the top 5 most memorable moments from ICC World Cup 2011.
Some other World Cup 2011 moments which also deserve a special mention are
- Yuvraj Singh with stupendous a total of 4 ‘man of the match’ awards
- Kemar Roach’s fierce spell of 6-27 against the Netherlands
- India vs England’s high scoring tie.
- South Africa choke once again in a Knock out match
SOME INTERESTING FACTS FROM WORLD CUP 2011:
- Most Runs: TM Dilshan (SL)- 500 Runs | 9 Inns
- Most Wickets: Shahid Afridi (PAK)- 21 Wickets | 8 Inns
- Highest Individual Score: Virender Sehwag (IND)-175(140)
- Best bowling: Kemar Roach (WI)- 6-27
- Highest Strike Rate (Min 200 Runs): Virender Sehwag (IND) – 122. 58
- Best Economy Rate (Min 30 overs): Ajantha Mendis (SL)- 3.14
Do watch this space for me. We would be covering the top ICC World Cup moments of other editions in future articles.