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World Cup flashbacks: No team had won the tournament batting second till 1992

world cup

Bengaluru, May 27: The 12th edition of the cricket World Cup will kick off on May 30. The first match will be played between England and South Africa at the Kennington Oval.

ICC Cricket World Cup Special Page

India will be the 10th and last team to launch their campaign and will play their first game against South Africa on June 5.

The World Cup had started in 1975 and till 1992, it had a couple of unique records. No team had won the tournament batting first in the first 17 years. Also, till the 1992 edition, no host nation could win the title. Sri Lanka were the first team to win a World Cup batting second when they beat Australia by 7 wickets in Lahore in 1996. They also became the first hosts to win the trophy, even though as a co-host. India were the first team to win a World Cup at home in 2011 while Australia repeated the feat in 2015.

The hosts could not win the WC between 1975 and 1992 either

Speaking about the jinx of World Cup cricket between 1975 and 1992, England had hosted it thrice (1975, 1979 and 1983) but they could reach the final once (1979) but lost to reigning champions West Indies. India and Pakistan hosted the trophy in 1987 but none of them could reach the final and the title was bagged by Australia.

In 1992, Australia and New Zealand hosted the trophy and this time, it was Pakistan who won it. In 1996, Sri Lanka were one of the co-hosts of the tournament along with India and Pakistan and broke the tradition to win the title as a host. Perhaps the home teams used to feel extra pressure when playing in a big event like the World Cup.

About teams winning the trophy batting first in the first five World Cups, Clive Lloyd’s West Indies beat Australia by 17 runs in the final of the 1975 edition while four years later, they humbled England by 92 runs. On both occasions, the West Indies had scored in a range of 280-290 which perhaps had put the opponents under pressure.

In 1983, India were all out for only 183 in the final but even the mighty West Indian batting line-up found it tough to chase the total and were all out for only 140, a record that Pakistan had worsened in 1999 with a 132 all out.

In 1987, Australia scored 253 for 5 in the final and a suicidal reverse sweep by Mike Gatting saw England fall short of their total by just seven runs. The Englishmen were third time unlucky chasing a total in the WC final when they lost to Imran Khan’s Pakistan by 22 runs in the 1992 edition.

In the next six editions, teams batting first won the tournament just twice while those chasing won four times. Australia thrashed India by 125 runs in the final of the 2003 edition and Sri Lanka by 53 runs by Duckworth-Lewis method in 2007. The four finals that were won by teams batting second are 1996 (Sri Lanka beat Australia), 1999 (Australia beat Pakistan), 2011 (India beat Sri Lanka) and 2015 (Australia beat New Zealand).

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Story first published: Monday, May 27, 2019, 17:44 [IST]
Other articles published on May 27, 2019
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