There have been five T20 World Cup winners so far. But, very much like the game, all have won the trophy in an extremely thrilling fashion…
Like any other sport, Cricket has been an evolving game. However, the most striking changes have been witnessed in the late 20th and the early 21st century. Most noteworthy among these is the advent of T20 cricket. The
20-over format brought the back audiences, who had little time to watch 5-day matches, back to the stadiums.
And given the rapidly growing prominence of the game, the T20 World Cup became the most prestigious contest. Ever since its inaugural edition in 2007, this biennial tournament has been a platform for numerous cricketers to announce their entries in world cricket with aplomb.
Organised on a total of 6 occasions, there have been 5 different T20 World cup winners. Here’s all you need to know about the T20 World Cup winners and how they achieved the crowning glory…
The inaugural edition of the T20 World Cup was held in South Africa and quite frankly India were not favourites to win. Most of India’s senior players including Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar had backed out.
With a new-look squad under a young captain, India were in Group D with arch-rivals Pakistan and Scotland. Their opening match with Pakistan entered history books for the most unexpected reasons.
To begin proceedings, India struggled to the pace of Mohammed Asif and Umar Gul and lost wickets. Thanks to a partnership between MS Dhoni and Robin Uthappa and a late cameo by Irfan Pathan, they put 141 on the board. Pakistan, despite a good start lost their way and put on the same in their 20 overs.
India won the match by a 3-0 football-like score by winning Bowl-out. All 3 of India’s bowlers hit the stumps while no one from Pakistan could. The second match with Scotland was abandoned and India qualified for the Super 8s.
New Zealand defeated India for the first time by 10 runs in a high-scoring game. Then came, England and an angry Yuvraj Singh. He struck Broad for six maximums in an over and India set a huge target of 219 of which England fell short by 18 runs.
South Africa were washed away relatively easily. The semifinal against Australia was a testament to the team’s strength and form. Yuvraj struck 70 of just 30 balls and support by Dhoni (36 of 18) and S Sreesanth stopped Australia 15 runs short of victory.
An India-Pakistan final was a fitting end. India scored a competitive a 157/5, thanks to Gautam Gambhir half-century. Pakistan were well on course even with regular wickets falling and had Misbah firing in all cylinders.
Needing 13 from the last 6, Dhoni gave the ball to newbie Joginder Sharma and he delivered as Misbah could not resist scooping a wide yorker to Sreesanth at short fine leg and Pakistan fell short by 5 runs. The genius of ‘Captain Cool’ was born here and India were the unexpected T20 world cup winners.
Pakistan covered up their last moment blemishes and won the 2nd edition held in England. In their opening group match, England defeated them considerably but bounced back strong against minnows Netherlands and qualified.
In the knockout stages, they encountered Srilanka and despite a lone fight from Younis Khan (50 of 37 balls) were beaten by 19 runs. They were clearly not hitting top gear and did not look like winners.
A low-scoring game against New Zealand and an Umar Gul masterclass restricted them to 99 and Pakistan cruised to victory with 6 wickets.
Pakistan showed some form and intent with a complete team performance against Ireland where Kamran Akmal top scored with 57 and Saeed Ajmal was the star in bowling with 4/19.
South Africa were opponenst in the semis and it was a close affair. Although, a match-winning performance from Shahid Afridi (51 of 34 and 2/16) and that was enough to see off the Proteas.
The finals proved no different from most of the Pakistan matches. Restrict the opponents, cruise through the chase and a comfortable Pakistan victory. Sri lanka did not look comfortable from get going except Kumar Sangakkara( 64* of 52).
Abdul Razzak took 3 wickets and Afridi again contributed with a match winning 54* to give Pakistan their first and only T20 world cup. Pakistan clearly did not dominate with 2 big losses and a close victory but managed enough to survive and emerged as T20 world cup winners.
The first 2 editions were really good for the English team but they turned to be unlucky. England were in Group D with West Indies and Ireland. Despite a 191/7 against West Indies, they lost by 8 wickets by the D/L method. The game against Ireland was a no-result and England qualified on NRR.
In the Super 8 stage, they restricted Pakistan and cruised through victory for 6 wickets with Kevin Pietersen top scoring with 73. Kevin Pietersen again top scored with 53* and Sidebottom wreaked havoc with a 3/23 against the Proteas onroute a 39 tun victory.
New Zealand were tough to break down and the match was a close affair. But England won it, courtsey an Eoin Morgan(40 of 34) with 3 wickets and 5 balls to spare.
The semifinals were against a consistent Srilanka but England made easy game of it. Restricted to a paltry 128/6, the Lankan lions could not stop England and Kevin Pietersen (42* of 26) to reach the finals.
The finals was an exciting one. England met traditional rivals Australia and both teams had been dominating their opponents. The Kensington Oval geared up for a run fest which, in reality was not to be.
England dominated proceedings from the start and the Aussies could muster up only 147/6. England, riding on Craig Kiewswetter’s 63 were comfortable victors. Kevin Pietersen was rightful choice for the Man of the Series award.
4West Indies (2012)
The Calypso Kings were a great T20 side boasting the likes of Chris Gayle and Kemar Roach and had shown glimpses in the last editions. But they failed to make the cut in crucial games.
The world cup was in Asia for the first time and West Indies were unlucky to a poor start and had a starkingly similar group stage like England in the last edition. They lost to Australia by 9 wickets in their first game courtesy the D/L method, despite scoring 191/8. The second match was against Ireland and ended in no result. Ireland seemed to be aught in this hoodoo of No result losses.
In the knockouts, Johnson Charles scored 84 of 56 and West Indies defeated defending champions England by 15 runs. They were comprehensively beaten in the 2nd match by host Sri Lanka after being restricted to just 129 and this was followed by a win against New Zealand.
The match was agonisingly tight with both teams scoring 139 and the Windies won the Super Over. Sunil Narine, who was rising up the ranks and was a touted mystery bowler was in his absolute best scalping 3/20 and winning the Man of the match award. West Windies finished second and were to face Australia.
The semi finals it was and entered Chris Gayle. He annhilated the hapless Australian bowling and took Windies to 205/4 with some finishing from Kieron Pollard (38* of 15). George Bailey tried hard but Australia could muster up only 131 in 16.4 overs.
The finals were against host Srilanka who were in top form. The Windies were stopped in just 137/6, that too because of a heroic 78 of 55 from Marlon Samuels, as Ajantha Mendis demolished them. But Sunil Narine took over the reins from the actual mystery bowler and turned over the tide. They restricted Mahela Jaywardene and packed up Sri lanka for just 101. Samuels was rightfully awarded the Player of the Match for his match winning knock.
5Sri Lanka (2014)
This was the second time when last edition’s finalists won the trophy in the next one. Bangladesh was the host this time and the stage was set in the warm up matches, when the Lankans won a close warm-up match against India.
The format was different this time as there were 2 groups of 5 teams each. Sri lanka had their first victory against South Africa in a closely fought affair. Minnows, Holland were swatted past with ease.
England were tough customers. A high scoring game, where Srilanka scored 189/4 courtesy of knocks from Dilshan and Mahela Jayawardene but it was Alex Hales who stole the show. He annihilated the Lankan bowling for his personal 116 and England never looked in trouble onroute a 6-wicket win.
New Zealand gave some jitters initially after bowling Srilanka out for just 119, but were comphrensively beaten by 59 runs at the end.
Up in the semi finals, they were against West Indies who broke their heart in 2012. Srilanka scored 160/6 with all round contributions from Lahiru Thirimanne, Dilshan, Angelo Mathews and Kusal Perera. The revised target was 108 in 13.5 overs after D/L method but West Indies scored just 80/4 giving a win by 27 runs.
Srilanka faced India, who were hot favourites and had been unstoppable. The Srilankans were extremely economical and never allowed India to change gears. Virat Kohli scored 77 in the total of 130/4. Defending a low total like that, India’s bowling failed to deliver as Srilanka won by 6 wickets with more than 2 overs to spare.
6West Indies (2016)
The first time India hosted the World T20 and it was a blockbuster event. Although at home, India never looked like they are on to win this tournament.
Now talking of the Windies, they were impeccable in the first 2 matches against England and defending champs Sri Lanka. Gayle scored a hundred in the first match while Fletcher scored 84 and the Calypso Kings cruised to victory.
They somewhat stuttered against South Africa chasing 123 and losing 7 wickets but eventually won it. The shocker was, the star-studded lineup was defeated by minnows and qualifiers, Afghanistan.
The knockout stage comes and Windies came to their best against hosts India. India were on fire and scored 192/2 with Kohli scoring 89*. But West Indies were in different mood. They made a mockery of the Indian bowling and no one except veteran pacer Ashish Nehra and bowling figures worth speaking about.
Chris Gayle went for cheap but Johnson Charles(52 of 36) set the tone. Lendl Simmons (82* of 51) and Andre Russell (43*of 20) made the Indian bowling look like school-level and chased down with 2 balls to spare.
In the finals, it was England again and it was one hell of a match. The winner was not fixed till the last over. England scored 155/9 in 20 overs. David Willey was great with the ball with figures of 3/20 but Marlon Samuels was MoM for his 66-ball 85.
Despite, all that it was Craig Braithwaitte who stole the show. He hit 4 consecutive sixes of Ben Stokes’ last over when West Indies needed 19 to win and won it. They were the rightful T20 World cup winners.