We have seen six sixes’ in an over, Sehwag’s 300 and South Africa chasing Australia’s 434 and winning it. We have had goosebumps and we have faced dejections. Cricket is a game of character, chance and talent – precisely why we love it! We present the top 3 moments in cricket that kept people at the edge of their seats.
1) SOUTH AFRICA’S SEMI-FINALS LOSS – 1992 WORLD CUP
Call it luck or fate, sometimes some things are just meant to happen. Sigh! An energetic South African team needed just 22 runs from 13 balls when rains played the spoil sport. A risible rule revised South Africa’s target to 22 runs off just one ball when the match resumed. Deemed to be one of the most important moments in World Cup history, this incident was also an inspiration for statisticians Tony Lewis and Frank Duckworth to come up with Duckworth-Lewis method. The Duckworth Lewis method was formally adopted by the ICC from the 1999 World Cup. If the DL method had been used then, South Africa’s revised target would have been to score 5 runs from one ball, which is still possible. As expected, South Africa lost the match and England went on to play Pakistan in the finals(and eventually lose the match!)
2) JAVED MIANDAD’S LAST BALL SIX
India Pakistan matches are always made in heaven. Having said that, no fan of Indian Cricket would ever forget the last ball six that Javed Miandad hit that led Pakistan to win the Austral-Asia cup 1985. The old-timers would remember that the entire last over was chaotic. Azharuddin missed a simple run out and Javed kept swinging wildly. In the last ball, Pakistan needed 4 runs and Javed was at the crease. Chetan Sharma’s infamous yorker turned full toss was sent to the skies by Miandad. Chandrakant Pandit has heard Javed shouting “Whatever happens, we have to run.. Hit or miss, just run!” to Tauseef Ahmed(Ironically so!). Chetan Sharma is also naming his biography ‘Life after six’.
3) TREVOR CHAPPEL’S UNDERARM BALL
One of the most infamous moments in the history of cricket, the last ball under-arm delivery in this match between Australia and New Zeland is also a classic example of morality. It was the third match of the best of five in the Benson Hedges World Cup series. NewZeland and Australia had won each. New Zeland needed six to tie from the last delivery of the game. Captain Greg Chappel instructed his brother Trevor Chappel to bowl an under arm to prevent McKechnie hitting a six. Frustrated McKechnie lobbed his bat away and Greg Chappel was booed all the way. A political outrage ensued and ICC amended the laws so underarm deliveries were illegal in ODI’s. This incident still stands as a perfect example of how something is well within the rules of the game but not within the rules of sportsmanship.