Cricket is one of the most popular sports around the world. And as with other sports, fans are emotionally connected with cricket. The game is now a beloved entity for billions. From the moments of thrill and excitement to the point when the eyes of the fans are filled with tears, cricket has given everything to the sports fanatics. Many people in India consider cricketers as their idols and Gods. It has been proven on many instances that this is not just a sport. Cricket is a collection of memories and moments that bring out emotions. Let us glance through the most emotional moments in cricket World Cup.
10The event which changed the face of Indian cricket
June 25, 1983 will forever be carved in the hearts of the Indian cricket fans. The image of Kapil Dev lifting the shining silver World Cup trophy forever embedded in the memory. Chasing a just 184, the Caribbean looked primed for their third successive World title. But the bowling duo Mohinder Amarnath and Madan Lal tore the batting lineup of West Indies and helped India to win the Prudential Cup (Now known as World Cup).
When Mohinder Amarnath sent down the last ball of the 52nd over, Holding missed the line and was knocked on the pads. For the final time the finger went up. For the millions of Indians back home, many bleary eyed in the late hour, glued to this novelty of live telecast and the happiness went crawling to the peak. The victory was not only emotional for the Indians, but also vital in putting the country on the cricket map.
9India vs Sri Lanka, World Cup Semi Final, 1996
India was cruising through at 98 for one, chasing Sri Lanka’s target of 251. Do you know? India lost seven wickets within 22 runs. Yes, it is hard to believe but it happened. With the fall of the eighth wicket, the crowd went crazy and berserk. Clive Lloyd, the match referee, had to abandon the match and Sri Lanka won by default. The loss saw Indian batsman Vinod Kambli leave the pitch in tears.
8 Sachin’s Emotional Century
Sachin Tendulkar is widely known as the ‘God of Cricket’ and there are several reasons for it. One of them is the ability to perform under high pressure – even emotional ones.
India had a bad start to the 1999 World Cup campaign, losing out to the South Africa in the opening game. They were hoping to get things right against Zimbabwe. But just a few days before the important fixture, Sachin Tendulkar received a terrible news – his father, professor Ramesh Tendulkar was no more.
The Master Blaster immediately flew to Mumbai to attend the family funeral. While Sachin was away, India went on to lose the second game as well. This time against Zimbabwe by three runs. Although the team needed Tendulkar, everyone respected his privacy. However, it was Sachin’s mother who insisted him to return back to England to help the team.
And on his return against Kenya, Sachin Tendulkar did the unthinkable. The little master oozed class by scoring an unbeaten 140 against Kenya at the County Ground in Bristol. In a match against Kenya, apart from the grief, Tendulkar was dealing with a niggling back injury and the possibility of India facing an early exit. India went on to win the game by 94 runs.
However, it was the moment when Sachin reached the three figures and looked up, towards the heavens which left watchers with a lump in their throats. It was one of the most emotional moments in cricket.
7Sachin’s dismissal in 2003 World Cup
For Australia it was their fifth World Cup final, while for India it was the second after their 1983 victory. Australia put the mammoth of 359, courtesy: Ricky Ponting’s 140. To challenge the 360 mark, Indian openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag paired up. It was the first over of Glenn McGrath and the ‘Pigeon’ caught Sachin on his last bowl of the same over. Sachin made amazingly 673 runs throughout the tournament but failed to impress in the final. Along with Sachin, no cricket fan in India would have dreamt this!
6India’s dismissal in WC 2007
The media sharpened its knives, people demanded answers and stones were pelted at cricketers’ homes. The moment nobody wants to recall came in ICC World Cup 2007. Nobody had expected this debacle.
After a disgraceful loss to minnows Bangladesh in the opening game of the tournament, India bounced back by getting the better of Bermuda in their second game. But the next task that awaited Rahul Dravid’s men was ardent. They had to overcome a strong Sri Lankan side in what was a must-win game. But India lost this match and tournament was over at the group stage.
This was the team which had legends such as Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble to name a few. Coach Greg Chappell resigned following India’s exit and a few months later, Dravid stepped down from captaincy as well. This may be attributed as one of the most dark phases of Indian cricket.
Cricketers’ effigies were burnt, and posters’ painted black. The forgetful episode was also an epitome of how fans are emotionally connected with sports.
5When India won first T20 WC
“In the air, Sreesanth takes it, India win”! Who will ever forget these words said by Ravi Shastri during commentary when India defeated Pakistan in a nail biting thriller of the inaugural T20 World Cup in South Africa 2007?
It was one of those emotional moments in cricket that fans burn the midnight oil and bear heartbreaking defeat. This is the moment they live for! Till the last ball, breath was on hold and within five seconds, there were tears of joy in every one’s joy. This was the story which shaped the present and future of Indian Cricket. This was the victory which channelised the beginning of what was to be known as the ‘MS Dhoni era‘.
4Yuvraj Singh Hits 6 sixes
Yuvraj Singh: A real warrior who braved the disease like cancer. Can anybody forget the incredible six sixes from him against England in 2009 T20 World Cup? Just before Yuvraj was going to hit those humongous six sixes, the entire stadium went quiet. The lion roared and attacked Stuart Broad by piling six sixes in an over. After this feat, he became the second Indian to rocket off the ball over the boundary in a row. Thinking about the epic feat still makes our hair raise, doesn’t it?
3Kohli dedicating his knock to Sachin
Sachin had come to see the boys play and Virat Kohli overwhelmed by the gesture dedicated his half-century against Pakistan in 2015 to Sachin. Bowing down in reverence to the Master Blaster, Virat thanked his idol. Didn’t the bond between them made your eyes flow with happy tears?
2Dhoni in tears after a defeat in 2015 WC
World Cup is never an easy tournament. It has no easy route to win it every year. After the historic win in 2011, MS Dhoni and co tried their best to reach the semi-final of World Cup 2015. Unfortunately, the Men in Blue lost to Australia. On one side, while the defeat was a hard pill to digest, on the other side, cricket fans saw a visual that they would never dreamt of.
The then Indian skipper MS Dhoni couldn’t control his emotions and was in tears during the presentation ceremony. His emotions gave away as he was teary eyed while addressing. This not only made the exit worse, but it also shows that players too are humans after all.
1World Cup after 28 years
“India lifts the World Cup after 28 years.” It was Ravi Shastri in the commentary box yet again as the crowd at Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai went crazy in the backdrop. It was one of the most pleasant one-liner every Indian could hear after MS Dhoni hit the winning six of World Cup 2011. It was a tribute to God of Cricket, Sachin Tendulkar. In fact, it was a circle completed for the Master Blaster, who commenced and culminated his cricketing journey in Mumbai.
There were rare, emotional sights visible everywhere – usually strong Yuvraj and Harbhajan Singh in tears, Sachin Tendulkar lifting the Tri colour and who can forget the team picking up the coveted trophy? It was one of the most heart-touching, emotional moments in cricket to see the champions in tears following the triumph.